Your baby's doctor will check for this reflex right after birth and during well-child visits.
To see the Moro reflex, the child will be placed face up on a soft, padded surface.
The head is gently lifted with enough support to just begin to remove the body weight from the pad. (Note: The infant's body should not be lifted off the pad, only the weight removed.)
The head is then released suddenly, allowed to fall backward for a moment, but quickly supported again (not allowed to bang on the padding).
The normal response is for the baby to have a startled look. The baby's arms should move sideways with the palms up and the thumbs flexed. The baby may cry for a minute.
As the reflex ends, the infant draws its arms back to the body, elbows flexed, and then relaxes.