Down Syndrome

What is Down Syndrome?

Down syndrome is a chromosomal abnormality, where an extra chromosome is found in a child (also referred to as a “trisomy”). This extra chromosome affects a child’s ability to develop both physically and intellectually. This chromosomal abnormality has no known cause, as current studies suggest that Down Syndrome randomly occurs, although the probability of a baby having Down Syndrome strongly correlates with the age of the mother. Studies show that the probability of Down Syndrome occurring in mothers under the age of 25 is approximately 0.1%. When the mother is over the age of 45, the probability increases to approximately 3%. Down Syndrome has also been shown to affect the vestibular systems of affected individuals, which may lead to motor difficulties in children with Down syndrome, including difficulty walking and balancing.


Signs of Down Syndrome:

According to the Centre of Disease Control and Prevention, the early signs to watch for are:

  • Physical features, such as shorter neck, flatter face, distinct shapes of eyes.
  • Loose joints.
  • Hearing loss.
  • Frequent ear and eye infections.
  • Sleep apnea.

Treatment for Down Syndrome:

Children living with Down Syndrome are affected by a variety of unique combinations of physical and intellectual disabilities. Therefore, treatments for children with Down Syndrome must be specifically tailored to children on a case-by-case basis in order to meet adequately meet a child’s physical and intellectual needs. SMILE has developed a variety of therapies that may be combined and customized in order to fully meet the needs of children living with Down Syndrome in order to fully maximize the potential of their everyday lives. At SMILE, your child will receive a wide spectrum of services, including occupational therapy, physical therapy, and vestibular rehabilitation in order to combat the challenges brought forth by Down Syndrome.

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