Intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDDs) are disorders that are usually present at birth and that negatively affect the trajectory of the individual's physical, intellectual, and/or emotional development. For more info on the Distinctions between Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, see below.
The terms “developmental disability” and “intellectual disability” have two very different meanings and they impact performance accordingly. For more info on Intellectual and Developmental Performance, see below.
Training in life skills is one of the important interventions for people with intellectual difficulties. For more info on Life Skills Support for the Intellectual and Developmentally Disabled, see below.
Like most of us, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities seek rewarding work. For more info on Professional Support for the Intellectually and Developmentally Disabled, see below.
Intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDDs) are disorders that are usually present at birth and that negatively affect the trajectory of the individual's physical, intellectual, and/or emotional development. Many of these conditions affect multiple body parts or systems.
An Intellectual disability starts any time before a child turns 18 and is characterized by problems with both:
Intellectual functioning or intelligence, which include the ability to learn, reason, problem solve, and other skills, and Adaptive behavior, which includes everyday social and life skills.
These disorders affect how the brain, spinal cord, and nervous system function, which can affect intelligence and learning. These conditions can also cause other problems such as behavioral disorders, speech or language difficulties, seizures, and trouble with movement. Cerebral palsy,5Down syndrome, Fragile X syndrome, and autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are examples of IDDs related to problems with the nervous system.
These disorders affect the senses (sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell) or how the brain processes or interprets information from the senses. Preterm infants and infants exposed to infections, such as cytomegalovirus, may have problems with their eyesight and/or hearing. In addition, being touched or held can be difficult for people with ASDs.
These disorders affect how the body uses food and other materials for energy and growth. For example, how the body breaks down food during digestion is a metabolic process. Problems with these processes can upset the balance of materials available for the body to function properly. Too much of one thing, or too little of another can cause problems with overall body and brain function. Phenylketonuria (PKU) and congenital hypothyroidism are examples of metabolic conditions that can lead to IDDs.
Individuals with degenerative disorders may seem or be normal at birth and may develop normally for a time, but then they begin to lose skills, abilities, and functions because of the condition. In some cases, the problem may not be detected until the child is an adolescent or adult and starts to show signs of loss of function. Some degenerative disorders result from other conditions, such as untreated problems of metabolism.
is attributable to a mental or physical impairment or a combination of mental and physical impairments;
is manifested before the person attains age 22;
results in substantial functional limitations in three or more of the following areas of major life activity:
2. receptive and expressive language
6. capacity for independent living, and
7. economic self-sufficiency;
It reflects the person's need for a combination and sequence of special, interdisciplinary, or generic care, treatment, or other services which are of lifelong or extended duration and are individually planned and coordinated;
except that such term when applied to infants and young children means individuals from birth to age five, inclusive, who have substantial developmental delay or specific congenital or acquired conditions with a high probability of resulting in developmental disabilities if services are not provided.
Intellectual disability is a disability characterized by significant limitations in both intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior, which covers many everyday social and practical skills. This disability originates before the age of 18.
A person is considered intellectually disabled if he or she has an IQ of less than 70 to 75. ... Intellectual disability is thought to affect about 1% of the population. Of those affected, 85% have mild intellectual disability. This means they are just a little slower than average to learn new information or skills.
We work with DEI professionals to ensure that people with disabilities enjoy the same benefits and experiences as their colleagues. Contact us
Training in life skills is one of the important interventions for people with intellectual difficulties. Life skills include self care skills such as eating, dressing and bathing, as well as other daily living skills like shopping, banking, phone use and housekeeping.
Living a healthy lifestyle is an integral part of quality of life. Life skills such as healthy eating, exercise, personal hygiene, and safe sex, enable adults with disabilities can make you feel better, look better and enhance long-term health and quality of life .
Personal appearance and hygiene can often help boost confidence in social situations. In fact, looking and smelling good will help nurture a sense of personal pride, help your loved one feel more accepted and can result in praise from others.
Eating and Cooking Healthy Food
It’s common for adults with disabilities, especially intellectual disabilities, to maintain a fairly unhealthy diet. Often this is because of a lack of education and knowledge about the benefits of healthy eating.
A healthy diet has many obvious, and several not-so-obvious, benefits. From a physical perspective, eating healthy foods creates more energy, helps maintain a healthy weight and prevents the increased risk of illness or disease later in life.
Psychologically, healthy eating can make an individual feel more confident in the way they look and interact with people.
Everyone has a different level of ability when it comes to exercise, so you don’t need to encourage your loved one to get up and run a marathon tomorrow. Daily exercise can start with something as simple as a walk to the shops, or a few arm raises.
Small habits such as this can boost energy levels and over time will improve body image, strength and wellbeing.
Sexuality is a normal part of life. We’re all human, and experience feelings and desires that drive us toward sexual activity.
However, with sexual activity comes responsibility. The responsibility to treat others with respect, and the responsibility to understand and practice sexual health.
Adults with disabilities, just like anyone else, can have rewarding sexual relationships. But in order to do so, they may need some additional support and information.
Shopping is a great way to interact in the community, improve communication and social skills, as well as learning important life skills such as money handling.
Perhaps you could combine a trip to the shops with a bit of exercise, by choosing to walk to the train station or local store with your loved one.
Washing, ironing, cleaning or gardening may be the type of life skills your loved one can start to build around the house.
Much like all of the other skills mentioned, the real benefit they will get from working on these skills is the confidence that they can learn new things. This confidence will be invaluable when they seek to approach other areas of development.
Hobbies and sport
What type of hobbies does your loved one enjoy doing? Have they considered playing sport?
Sport can be a great way to develop friends, communication skills and stay fit and healthy.
Like most of us, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities seek rewarding work.
Employment & Financials
Work is a part of adult life. It empowers us to contribute to society and make money to do more of the things we love – whether they be hobbies, sports or community activities. Professional assistance would include:
Preparing a resume
Conducting an interview
Health and safety practices