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Eight Developmental Disabilities In Children You Must Know About

Developmental disabilities are emotional, intellectual, or physical disorders that start before birth or early childhood. In most cases, these disabilities are linked with children that may have undergone developmental delays and may last lifelong.

While developmental disorders are there to stay, early diagnosis can help the caretakers make a huge difference. Understanding the problem can make a lot of difference for you and the child. Of course, life is different for children with developmental disorders. However, some tools and accommodations can make things easier.

Here are some common developmental disabilities you must know about.

1.  Autism

Autism is one of the most common developmental diseases, as shown by reliable resources about autism prevalence. It begins before age three, and the symptoms may show as early as within the first 12-24 months of a child’s life.

Children with autism often have problems with communication and integration. Their ways of learning, moving, and being attentive can differ greatly from the other children. While autism can last for life, the right strategies and practices can improve the symptoms over time.

Here are some common symptoms of autism in children.

  • Limited eye contact
  • No Response to hearing their name
  • Lack of facial expression
  • Loss of language

2. Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral Palsy is a common disorder that affects more than 10,000 infants every year. It occurs when the brain’s development is slowed or damaged in the first 2-3 years of a child’s life. Over time, cerebral palsy can lead to poor balance and uncontrollable movements.

Cerebral palsy can differ from one child to another, and the symptoms may be mild or severe. In some cases, cerebral palsy may also affect one side of the body and not the other. These symptoms can be indicators of cerebral palsy in children.

  • Stiffness or floppiness in the body
  • Clumsy movements
  • Muscle spasms
  • Shaky hands

3. Down Syndrome

Down syndrome is another common genetic condition developed when a child is born with an extra chromosome. A child with Down syndrome has an extra copy of chromosome 21. As opposed to a common cell containing 46 chromosomes, children with Down syndrome have 47 chromosomes.

It may seem like an insignificant change, but this little detail can have a huge impact on how the brain and body of a child develop. Children with Down syndrome can have some distinctive features, but they can have a quality life with the needed care.

Here are some common characteristics of children with Down syndrome.

  • Flat bridge of the nose
  • Slanted eyes
  • Short neck
  • Small ears

4. Spina Bifida

Spina Bifida is one of the relatively rare developmental conditions. Unlike many other developmental disorders, doctors are unable to figure out the causes of Spina Bifida. It may be caused due to any or the combination of genetic, nutritional, and environmental risk factors. However, vitamin B-9 deficiency remains to be one of the contributing factors.

With proper arrangements at hand, Spina bifida can be surgically treated within 24 to 48 hours of your child’s birth. This procedure is performed on the infant under anesthesia, and the surrounding skin and tissue are closed afterward to protect the spinal cord. These are the symptoms of Spina bifida.

  • Loss of bladder control
  • Weakness in legs
  • Bowel incontinence
  • Lack of sensation

5. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

According to studies, there are many genetic factors that can contribute to ADHD in children. In addition, drinking or smoking during pregnancy can also increase the risk of ADHD in children. In many cases, premature or underweight babies are also shown to be at a higher risk of the said disorder.

Gratefully, people can live a normal life by monitoring the symptoms of ADHD and actively working towards making things work. It can also be treated with professional help using a combination of medicine and therapy. Here are some common indicators of ADHD in children.

  • Short attention span
  • Forgetfulness
  • Lack of attention
  • Difficulty in following instructions


6. Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a brain development disability that causes people to have seizures. The common symptoms of epilepsy in infants may include lack of oxygen, infections, and hemorrhage. It may also be caused due to genetic and abnormal brain development.

The treatment options for epilepsy vary from child to child. Some children may outgrow the seizures, while others may need to undergo surgical procedures. Many children may also respond well to medication and can leave a healthy life. These symptoms of epilepsy are common indicators.

  • Jerking movements
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Noisy breathing
  • Confused gestures

7. Dyslexia

There are many more adults who have trouble processing language than commonly believed. This disease continues to impact thousands of children in reading and writing. It is one of the most common issues parents and teachers encounter while dealing with children.

Dyslexia is a genetic disorder that specifically affects the part of your brain that makes reading and writing possible. While no medication can treat dyslexia yet, many interventions can help children find new ways to write and read. These symptoms can help you see the common signs of dyslexia.

  • Slow or labored reading
  • Difficulty blending letters
  • Unusual pronunciation of words
  • Poor comprehension

8. Intellectual Disability

As the name suggests, intellectual disability is a broader term to describe mental disorders or limitations that can affect what a child learns, thinks, talks, and understands. Children with intellectual disabilities need a lot of time and effort to perform the tasks that other children their age may face in no time.

There are many genetic and environmental factors that may contribute to intellectual disorders, such as Down syndrome, fetal alcohol syndrome, birth defects, and infections. These factors can also weigh in while the baby is born or afterward.

Currently, there is no cure for intellectual disorders. However, there is much weight and support from loved ones that can help children with intellectual disorders live a complete life. People with intellectual disorders can thrive with early and ongoing interventions.

Here are some common symptoms of intellectual disabilities in children.

  • Forgetfulness
  • Trouble understanding social rules
  • Restricted communication skills
  • Difficulty in problem-solving

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