Retained Primitive Reflexes

What are Retained Primitive Reflexes


From the moment we are conceived, our brain develops many ‘primitive’ reflexes that help us survive. After birth, these reflexes are referred to neonatal reflexes. Activities such as breastfeeding, sucking, crawling, and a babies ability to react to stimuli are dependent on these reflexes.

As babies grow, these reflexes are no longer needed. They diminish or integrate into more complicated skills that are appropriate, such as hand eye co-ordination, balance, and the ability to think through more complicated tasks. In some cases, due to trauma (very commonly birth trauma through intervention such as forceps, cesarian delivery) to the body at an early stage in life, a baby’s brain may allow the simple, neonatal reflexes to remain, inhibiting a growing child’s ability for their brain to take on new more complicated tasks.
This can lead to learning and behavioral difficulties as outlined above and more.

Assessment of children for these reflexes is safe, gentle and fun for children. Treatment is surprisingly simple, and very effective. Treatment is very precise, and generally involves an initial stage of weekly 15 minute sessions over a 6-12 week period (depending on each child and circumstance). Parents remain very well informed about the progress of their child’s treatment at every stage, and are included in the process every step of the way.


How We Can Help


At Health Matters we know all the body’s functions are controlled by the brain, spinal cord and nervous system. We know our body has the potential to grow children, heal a cut and grow hair, without us needing to teach it or give it anything in order to do so.

We believe children are information ‘sponges’ who learn and behave according to the environment they are placed in. We help families and encourage children to reach their full potential, by helping their brains and bodies adapt to their environments. Children are ALWAYS smarter than we think, and capable of MUCH MORE than we may believe!

Does your child experience any of the following?

• Difficulty learning how to crawl, or walk?
• Withdrawn symptoms, anxiety, clinginess, shyness, and tantrums?
• Over-reactive, over-sensitive, been diagnosed with ADHD?
• Speech and/or articulation difficulty, trouble describing what they are thinking?
• Jumbling of letters or poor spelling, difficulty writing expressively, poor posture when sitting?
• Easy distractibility, poor co-ordination, messy handwriting?
• Lack of concentration, difficulty sitting up straight, motion sickness?
• Walking on toes, poor flexibility?
• Trouble with bed-wetting, trouble sitting still at home and school?


This technique, founded by Dr Keith Keen over 20 years ago, was developed for use with children and adults with learning and behavioral difficulties.