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Help for Autism Pauline Shannon





Individual movement programmes which remove physical blocks and make real changes to the lives of children and adults living with Autism Spectrum Disorder. 

Reflex Integration and Autism Spectrum Disorders

From autism to Aspergers Reflex integration may be able to help you

Reflexes are the blueprint for optimal development.  Retained reflexes make life difficult for everyone and are often contributing to the difficulties experienced by those living with Autism Spectrum Disorder.  

  • If the early reflexes are retained i.e. the withdrawal reflex and the Moro reflex it can lead to over sensitivity and cause individuals to be overwhelmed by life.  

  • Sensory oversensitivity in-particular can be a significant issue and can often be reduced by a reflex integration programme.  

  • Retained reflexes can effect the individuals ability to read non-verbal communication and to express themselves using non-verbal communication. 


The programmes also help with visual and auditory integration improving Social integration

A 11 year old boy with a diagnosis of Autism


Nathan has had a diagnosis of autism for some time but lately life has been very difficult for him and his family.  I met his mum in Leith to look at his history.  There were only a few early developmental indicators in Nathan’s early history.  His current picture was one of being overwhelmed and unable to cope with anything.  The issue which had driven his mum to contact me was his behaviour and in particular his refusal to go to school.  She described tantrums which had included him slamming his door so much the wall was damaged and the frame was coming loose.  He becomes so anxious at even the idea of school that he had been a non-attender for almost a year.  His family were at their wits end.


As with all the clients I see with autism my approach is very gentle as often when they become overwhelmed they become resistant to what I offer.  Nathan was able to settle and participate in most of the assessment which revealed lots of the early reflexes to be significantly retained.  This is often the case when a child is unable to cope with everyday not threatening situations.  Again, my experience with children with autism is that the gentler approach is most successful so we worked very slowly and carefully through some reflex integration exercises.  It turned out that he became resistant to the exercises after about 4 weeks so I saw him more frequently than usual and always gave him a fall-back exercise to change to if he could not continue to do the chosen one.


Progress was slow but steady with Mum reporting that Nathan was calmer and better able to process situations.  Nathan said the exercises were helping but he did not know in what way.  After 6 months Nathan is back in school full time and seems to be managing it.  He has been on residential trips with the school and had a great time.  In the last month, he has only slammed the door once and has identified ways to prevent things getting out of control. 

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