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Myths & Realities

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What is Down Syndrome?

Down syndrome is a chromosomal condition associated with intellectual disability, a characteristic facial appearance and poor muscle tone (hypotonia) in infancy. The degree of intellectual disability varies, but it is usually mild to moderate. Down syndrome occurs in about 1 in 1000 newborns.

Down syndrome, also known as trisomy 21, is a genetic disorder caused by the presence of all or part of a third copy of chromosome 21 It is typically associated with physical growth delays, characteristic facial features and mild to moderate intellectual disability. The average IQ of a young adult with Down syndrome is around 50, similar to the mental age of an 8 or 9 year old child.

Breaking 7 Myths

Myth No. 1 : Down syndrome is a rare genetic disorder.
Reality : Down syndrome is one of the most common genetic disorders effecting one in every eight hundred or thousand new births.
Myth No. 2 : Down syndrome children are normally born to elder parents.
Reality : 80% of the children born with Down syndrome are from women younger than 35. However, the risk and incidence of children being born with Down syndrome does increase with the age of the mother.
Myth No. 3 : Down syndrome children are severely retarded.
Reality : the IQ of children with Down syndrome range from mild to moderate retardation. They can definitely learn and become educated and many special schools and educational institutions are still discovering the full educational potential of such children.
Myth No. 4 : Most people with Down syndrome need to be institutionalized.
Reality : Today, people with Down syndrome live with their families and participate in all the social, recreational and work related tasks within society. In many cases (like with our special workers), they work at fruitful jobs and contribute to their own livelihood. Many of them socialize with others with Down syndrome as well as with normal people.
Myth No. 5 : There is little community support in bringing up children with Down syndrome.
Reality : While it is true that the academic and training facilities are woefully short, there are opportunities for education and training. We at Om Creations have taken the lead and welcome any contributions by way of assistance to further this task.
Myth No. 6 : Adults with Down syndrome are unemployable.
Reality : A visit to our production centre will be an eye opener. Every day over —- adults with Down syndrome assemble and work at creating craft items, cooking and baking for the market. Our products are sold on merit and not on the basis of our worker’s disabilities. At the SPJ Sadhana School there are training facilities for office routines and in fact our students are completely capable of handling most office tasks from printing, to filing and handling office routine. Many of our ex students have found fruitful employment with companies such as The Taj Hotel, The Taj Presidency and self-owned confectionery shop in Pune.
Myth No. 7 : People with Down syndrome are always happy.
Reality : People with Down syndrome have exactly the same kind of feelings like anyone else. They are happy when treated properly and hurt when faced with inconsiderate behaviour. They are warm and caring and form deep emotional attachments and friendships. Their emotional expression is a mite stronger than most people, but that is part of the syndrome.

Redefining the capabilities of the developmentally challenged

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