If you place your finger or other slim object in your baby’s palm, his fingers will grasp the object tightly. Be careful, though, because your baby cannot control this reflex. If you place a rattle in your baby’s hand, for example, he could unexpectedly let go and drop it on his head. Your baby’s grip is so strong, you might notice that you can pull him up when he’s gripping both your fingers. Again, watch out since he could let go at any moment and fall backward, causing injury.
This reflex is also present in the feet causing the toes to curl. It can be tested by lightly touching your baby’s feet or toes. This reflex only lasts until your child is about 3 months old.
Also Known As: Darwinian Reflex (after Scientist Charles Darwin), Tonic Grasp Reflex or Palmar / Plantar Grasp Reflex.