I came across the subject of Primitive Reflexes a few times in the last year, and really took an interest about a month ago when I decided to do a course online about it.
Doing anything in my body has always been hard for me, and learning about the unintegrated reflexes made me realise why.
It so happened that the only person trained in NZ on the Rhythmic Movement website, lives 8 mins away from me I've had one session so far with her, she's a kineseologist, and she worked getting my body switched on to achieve success integrating the reflexes.
These reflexes can be integrated at any age in life.
It appears from all my symptoms and the journey in my life, I have an active fear paralysis reflex and actiive moro reflex. It all makes so much sense now. Just even reading the course has me in tears because I relate to it all so much.
A reflex is an automatic, repetitive movement that is instinctual and aids in development, as well as development of the brain. We have many reflexes, like blinking, but the one's I want to talk about are primitive reflexes. These are reflexes that are formed in the womb and hopefully become inactive in the toddler stage.
Sucking, and grasping of the hands, are primitive reflexes. These reflexes, and others, are designed to transform into more sophisticated movements, and therefore become integrated. They form the foundation, and development of balance, mobility, hearing, speaking, vision, learning and communicating.
There are many reasons why these reflexes don't phase out, ie: lack of movement as a child, stress in the mother in pregnancy, illness, environmental toxins and many more reasons. They can be retriggered any time in life, often due to trauma and stress, and because of this, can cause a whole host of issues ranging from anxiety, ADHD, depression, learning disorders, sensory disorders, lack of confidence, extreme shyness, vision and hearing problems, addictions, autism and constantly feeling overwhelmed.
Reflex movements are the foundation of our nervous system, they originate in the brain stem, so they really are about survival, and staying unintegrated cause someone to be constantly in fight or flight. Body parts can't move independently and freely, and can cause weak muscle tone, aches and muscle tension, fatigue, and a lot of effort to complete tasks.
Key Childhood Reflexes
Fear Paralysis Reflex
This reflex should ideally be integrated before birth and is about freezing, as in a deer in the headlights. Without integration it may cause the Moro reflex to not integrate as well.
Some long term effects of an unintegrated Fear Paralysis reflex are:
- Underlying anxiety
- Extreme shyness
- Fear of groups
- Fear of separation
- Withdrawal from touch
- Sleep and eating disorders
- and many more
Sometimes called the infant-startle reflex, this is an automatic reaction to sudden changes in stimuli, ie: bright lights, sounds, temperature, touch, movement. Unintegrated, a person can feel hypersensitive to any incoming stimulation. This can cause a change in blood pressure, cortisol and adrenaline levels, and breathing rate.
Some long term effects of an unintegrated Moro reflex are:
- Poor digestion
- Weak immune system
- Poor balance and coordination
- Difficulty adapting to change
- Difficulty filtering stimuli
- hyperactivity then fatigue
- Difficulty with visual perception
- Hypersensitivity to sound, light, touch, movement, smell
- Emotional outbursts, easy to anger
- and many more
Other reflexes that can be unintegrated are Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex, Asymmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex, Symmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex, Spinal Galant Reflex, Oral, Hand and Foot Reflexes.
There are different body movements to do daily in order to integrate these reflexes. I've read a lot of wonderful testimonials about the changes that can happen. I will keep you updated about what happens for me in my sessions and from doing the course online.