A baby that has just been born still does not know how to do something, he has only reflexes without conditions. But already during the first months of life, complex voluntary reactions will begin to form on the basis of these unconditioned reflexes.
By the age of one year, the baby’s nerv ous activity has evolved so much that he will be able to perform the most difficult tasks for his age. Reflexes are certain reactions of the body to the effects of stimuls. These reactions are controlled by the central nervous system. In addition to the nervous system, skin receptors and muscles also participate in their formation.
All reflexes can be divided into two large groups – congenital and acquired. Congenital reflexes are inherent in the body from birth, while acquired ones require a certain amount of learning. Knowing exactly what the reactions of a healthy newborn to a particular stimulus should be, a neurologist can easily suspect a pathology and send a small patient in time for additional examination and,
if necessary, for treatment. In a child who is developing normally, reactions should be symmetrical, that is, the baby on the right and left should respond equally to irritation. Asymmetry of reflexes is said when the child reacts normally on one side and there is no reaction on the other.
For example, if a child grabs fingers well with one hand and does not do it with the other, then this indicates the absence of a grasping reflex on one side. One of the pronounced reflexes is the hug or Moro reflex. When patting on the thigh and buttock, when hitting the changing table at a distan ce of 15-20 cm from the baby’s head, with a sudden noi se, the child first takes his hands to the sides and unbends his fingers, and then returns them to their original position.
The reflex is expressed immediately after birth and weakens by 4 months.