The Characteristics Of Down Syndrome


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An Overview of Down Syndrome

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The Characteristics Of Down Syndrome

  1. 1. The Characteristics of Down Syndrome Candace M. Orr Early Intervention: Early Childhood Special Education
  2. 2. Facts About Down Syndrome <ul><li>First identified in 1866 by Dr. Langdon Down. </li></ul><ul><li>Down Syndrome causes mild or moderate retardation. </li></ul><ul><li>About 5,000 infants are born each year with Down Syndrome; the majority are males . (Bowe, 2007, pp. 353-354) </li></ul>
  3. 3. 3 Kinds of Chromosomal Abnormalities that Result in Down Syndrome <ul><li>Trisomy 21 - 3 chromosomes in pair 21 rather than the normal 2 (95% of all cases) </li></ul><ul><li>Translocation – Extra #21 chromosome that is attached to another chromosome (3 – 4% of cases) </li></ul><ul><li>Mosaicism – Some cells with 46 chromosomes and some with 47 (least occurring) </li></ul><ul><li>(Down Syndrome Association, 2008, About us section) </li></ul>
  4. 4. Common Features of Down Syndrome <ul><li>Flat profile </li></ul><ul><li>Low set ears </li></ul><ul><li>Almond shaped eyes </li></ul><ul><li>Small mouth, furrowing of tongue </li></ul><ul><li>Curved fifth finger </li></ul><ul><li>Single palmer crease </li></ul><ul><li>Gap between hallux and second toe </li></ul><ul><li>Poor muscle tone, loose ligaments </li></ul><ul><li>( Rodini & Souza, 1998) </li></ul>
  5. 5. Health Problems Associated with Down Syndrome <ul><li>Heart Defects : approximately half of all children born with D.S. have some kind of heart defect. </li></ul><ul><li>Leukemia : Young children with D.S. are more likely to develop leukemia than other children without D.S.. </li></ul><ul><li>Infectious Diseases : Because of abnormalities in their immune system, people with D.S. are more susceptible to infectious diseases. </li></ul><ul><li>Dementia : There is a greatly increased risk of Dementia and signs and symptoms start around age 40. </li></ul><ul><li>Other problems : D.S. is associated with gastrointestinal blockage, thyroid problems, hearing loss and poor vision (Mayo Clinic, 2007, Down Syndrome section). </li></ul>
  6. 6. Physical Development <ul><li>Down Syndrome causes weak muscle tone (hypotonia) and loose ligaments (ligament laxity). </li></ul><ul><li>The effect is a delay in turning over, sitting, standing, walking, etc.. </li></ul><ul><li>Eventually a child with Down Syndrome will reach growth milestones of other children without Down Syndrome (American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, 2003). </li></ul>
  7. 7. Physical Milestones 2 – 3 years (Routh, 2004, p. 25) 3 – 5 years Copies a circle 9 – 10 months 1 – 3 years Builds a tower of two cubes 9 – 17 months 1 – 4 years Walks alone 9 – 16 months 1 – 3 years Stands alone 2 – 6 months 4 – 11 months Reaches out and grasps object 1- 4 months 3 - 9 months Holds head steady Other Children Child with Down Syndrome Milestone
  8. 8. Cognitive Development <ul><li>There is no standard profile of a person with Down Syndrome. </li></ul><ul><li>Most people with Down Syndrome have mild to moderate mental impairments. </li></ul><ul><li>Many people with Down Syndrome can lead productive and satisfying lives in their communities </li></ul><ul><li>(Easter Seals, 2008, Resource section). </li></ul>
  9. 9. New Down Syndrome Cognitive Research <ul><li>According to the Stanford School of Medicine Down Syndrome Research Center: </li></ul><ul><li>Until recently cognitive aspects of the disorder were too complex to understand ...Our hypothesis is that the activity of these extra genes lead to cognitive impairments…each new research lead will be pursued as rapidly as possible. We intend to accelerate the application of research advance to the care of people with Down Syndrome (Stanford School of Medicine, 2006). </li></ul>
  10. 10. Communication Speech and Language Development <ul><li>There is a wide range of communication abilities in children and adolescents with Down Syndrome. </li></ul><ul><li>Individuals with D.S. often understand more than they can express. </li></ul><ul><li>Vocabulary and social language are areas of strength. </li></ul><ul><li>Grammar and sequencing are areas of difficulty. </li></ul><ul><li>Intelligibility of speech is frequently a problem. Many children have problems with strength, timing, and coordination of muscle movements for speech due to hypotonia (National Down Syndrome Society,2002). </li></ul>
  11. 11. Adaptive Development <ul><li>Like all children, progress for children with D.S. is influenced by family life and the parent’s child rearing skills. </li></ul><ul><li>O – 5 years : By 5 years of age most children with D.S. will be walking, toilet trained, dress and feed themselves with minimal help, if this is expected of them . </li></ul><ul><li>5 – 11 years : There is consistent evidence of significant gains in language, reading, writing, and arithmetic from full inclusion in mainstream schools. </li></ul><ul><li>11 – 16 years : Education makes a significant difference in the level of independence achieved in work, social, and leisure life, along with support from family, friends, and services (Bird, Buckley, & Sacks, 2001, Development Overviews section). </li></ul>
  12. 12. Social / Emotional Development <ul><li>Young children : They tend to play alongside other children rather than with them. </li></ul><ul><li>They often look to their peers for guidance in play situations. </li></ul><ul><li>They prefer routines and like to repeat the same type of play over and over again. </li></ul><ul><li>Teens : They may approach total strangers with an inappropriate display of affection. </li></ul><ul><li>They may be overly friendly and gullible with strangers </li></ul><ul><li>They may repeat the same joke or complaint over and over again (Girod, 200l, pp. 27-28). </li></ul>
  13. 13. Social / Emotional Development cont. <ul><li>Children with D.S. need a great deal of guidance in learning good manners, how to play, and controlling their behavior. </li></ul><ul><li>Plenty of practice in social situations early in life is very important, especially in preparation for the teen years. </li></ul><ul><li>Good Language development is the basis for social interaction ( Girod, 2001, p. 28). </li></ul>Practice Language Development Guidance
  14. 14. October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month
  15. 15. References <ul><li>American Academy of Pediatrics. (2003). Musculoskeletal care patient education </li></ul><ul><li>collection: Musculoskeletal effects of down syndrome. Retrieved September </li></ul><ul><li>20, 2008, from </li></ul><ul><li>fact/thr_report4ed1.html?Thread_ID=461&topcategory+Children </li></ul><ul><li>Buckley, S.J., & Bird G. (2001). Down syndrome issues and information . </li></ul><ul><li>(Development overview section). Retrieved September 22, 2008, from Down </li></ul><ul><li>Syndrome Online Website: </li></ul><ul><li>Bowe,F.G. (2007). Early childhood special education: Birth to eight (4 th ed., pp. </li></ul><ul><li>353-354 ). New York: Thomson Delmar Learning. </li></ul><ul><li>Down Syndrome Association, Greater Cincinatti. (2008). What is down syndrome ?. </li></ul><ul><li>(About us section). Retrieved September 21, 2008 from http://www.dsage. </li></ul><ul><li>com/aboutus_whatIs.asp </li></ul>
  16. 16. References cont. <ul><li>Easter Seals, (2008). Understanding down syndrome .(Resource section). </li></ul><ul><li>Retrieved September 21, 2008 from </li></ul><ul><li>PageServer?pagename=ntl_understand_down_syndrome </li></ul><ul><li>Girod, C.M. (2001). Down syndrome .(pp 27-28).San Diego: Lucent Books. </li></ul><ul><li>Mayo Clinic.(April 6, 2007). Health problems with down syndrome affect all </li></ul><ul><li>domains.(Down syndrome section). Retrieved September 25, 2008 from </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>complications. </li></ul><ul><li>National Down Syndrome Society.(2002). Speech and language skills in </li></ul><ul><li>children and adolescents with down syndrome . [Brochure]. New York: </li></ul><ul><li>National Down Syndrome society. </li></ul>
  17. 17. References cont. <ul><li>Rodini, E.S., & A.R. Souza.(1998). Down syndrome: Characteristics and </li></ul><ul><li>etiology. Retrieved from </li></ul><ul><li>down/down/_i.htm </li></ul><ul><li>Routh, K. (2004). Just the facts: Down syndrome .(p. 25).Chicago:Heinemann </li></ul><ul><li>Library. </li></ul><ul><li>Stanford School of Medicine, Palo Alto, Down Syndrome Reseach Center. </li></ul><ul><li>(2006). Cognitive research . Retrieved September 24,2008 from </li></ul><ul><li>World Wide Website </li></ul>