Baby Physical Development: The Stepping Reflex
Your newborn has a set of normal reflex behaviors that you may observe. Reflexes are movements that are involuntary, and may occur spontaneously as part of your baby's daily routine, or may be in response to a stimulus. Observations of these behaviors help to identify normal brain and nerve activity in baby's physical development. Certain reflexes only occur during particular periods of development.
The stepping reflex is a fun one for new parents. Here's how to make your baby do it: Hold him over a surface in such a way that one foot is touching the surface. Make sure that you keep his head supported while you do this. The foot with the weight on it will lift up as if taking a step and the other will lower. The step reflex will probably disappear by the time your baby is 3 months old, until it reappears when it is time for him to learn to walk (between 9 and 18 months usually).
Not all babies will exhibit these behaviors all the time, and lack of a reflex does not necessarily mean that there is something wrong with your baby. Talk to your child's pediatrician if you have any concerns regarding your baby's development.
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