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Published on Nov 8, 2011
Baby girl 3½ weeks old. Baby's lying on their backs often turn their head to one side or the other. The limbs on the side toward which the head turns (ipsilateral extremities) will straighten (extend), and the opposite limbs(contralateral extremities) bend (flex), the so-called 'fencing posture'. The movement is most evident in the arms but may also be observed in the legs. By turning the head to the opposite side, the extension and contraction of the limbs often change accordingly. The reflex may stimulate eye-hand coordination, because the extended arm moves in front of the face. The reflex disappears around the third/fourth month of life. If the reflex continues to be triggered past six months of age, the child may have a disorder of the upper motor neurons. The ANTR is one of the few asymmetric baby reflexes. It is suggested that this reflex is related to brain lateralization (the unique development of brain functions, e.g. speech production, which tend to become more dominant in one brain hemisphere than in the other). The presence of the reflex at older age might indicate that certain areas in the cortex are not in proper control of parts of the brainstem. For more baby reflexes check my playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list...