Having a child with Down syndrome in the family does not have to mean pain, distress or misfortune that we have to live through a difficult situation. Perhaps receiving the news may cause some impact, but you should know that these children are extraordinary people with innate talent and an incredible ability to love and lavish affection.
Also far from what some might think, although they are children with different abilities, they can relate and function just as another child would. Also, since the world includes children with Down syndrome to traditional basic education systems, many have managed to graduate from high school; others go to college and have important works to help them be more independent.
The upside of this, is that the general population are more educated about this disorder and has learned to see them in a more natural way, without making them feel different or generating some kind of exclusion.
The bottom line, the family
But rather than being accepted by the rest of society, children with this anomaly are people who need and require more affection, dedication and support from their family, first from their parents, who become part of their immediate and principal environment. They must believe strongly in the possibilities of successful development of that child.
Although psychotherapists actually indicate that parents do not expect to have a child with this syndrome, they must accept and understand, have time and patience, the kid depends on them to develop a potential.
Like any other child, they need love, cuddles and caresses, fights with his brothers and games with his friends, all these experiences will help and be the first step for socialization with other children and others outside the family, once they enter to school or kinder.
It is true that many children with Down syndrome may also present some health complications such as heart defects or gastrointestinal disorders, or thyroid, ear, sight and hearing, but they are 50% of the total. It is important that once diagnosis is known at birth, these children receive preventive health care, including monitoring all their vaccinations and other recommended checks.
Currently, all these medical recommendations are being made more frequently by families, so more people with Down syndrome live longer and maintain a healthier lifestyle than in previous years.
It is undeniable that children or people with this syndrome are very sensitive and therefore they are always related to art activities like painting, music, singing, among other activities that help them explore and bring out their imagination.
There are some who become writers, musicians, photographers and poets. When people with Down syndrome get greater opportunities, their accomplishments advance in a parallel way with those opportunities.
With the right support, people with Down syndrome give much more than they receive from the birth until they reach adulthood. Someone may think that these people of natural and huge heart do not make this world better.
As adults, people with Down syndrome can live alone or get married. It is best to live in areas with access to public transportation, places of entertainment where they can relax, go shopping or out to have dinner.
There are testimonies of life in which these people claim to have a job and lead a perfectly normal and happy life. There is more and more equality in their rights and currently companies accept and give them a job. In all cases, they prove to be good people with great attitude to learn and are very entrepreneurial.
All this progress they achieved in both learning and social development is mainly to the positive influence at home. Studies confirm that a child with Down syndrome can develop their talents and skills through a healthy family environment, early learning and educational opportunities.
Although the exact cause is unknown, Down syndrome is a disorder of chromosome pair 21 and any couple can have a child like this.
It can manifest in any ethnic group, nationality, religion or socioeconomic class.
In the United States, approximately 1 in every 733 babies is born with Down syndrome. 80% of children with Down syndrome are born from women under 35 years.
People with Down syndrome have a wide range in mental ability, behavior and physical development.
They are favored when raised in a happy home, with early learning, education, medical care and positive attitudes.
Remember that early stimulation begins from the day we have our first baby in arms and there is nothing different during early months related with other children in their basic needs: to feel loved and cared.
But after those first few months is necessary to "help" that child to strengthen the body and prepare mind for future learning.
The purpose of early stimulation is that child should generate his/her own personality, location in the family and then society.