October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month. Join us in celebration of people with Down Syndrome and help us educate others on what the syndrome is. Essentially, this means a person was born with an extra chromosome 21. Chromosomes are small “packages” of genes in the body. They determine how a baby’s body forms during pregnancy. Subsequently, this determines how its body functions as it grows in the womb as well as after birth. Typically, babies are born with 46 chromosomes.
Down Syndrome Facts
- It occurs when an individual has a full or partial extra copy of chromosome 21.
- This can happen to people of all races and economic levels.
- There are three types. The first is trisomy 21, which accounts for 95% of cases. Another is translocation. Lastly is mosaicism.
- This is the most commonly occurring chromosomal condition.
- They have an increased risk for certain medical conditions.
- Positive support from family, friends, and the community enables people with Down syndrome to lead fulfilling and productive lives.
- They attend school, work, have meaningful relationships, vote, and contribute to society in many wonderful ways.
- Life expectancy for people with Down syndrome has increased dramatically in recent decades – from 25 in 1983 to 60 today.
- Quality educational programs, a stimulating home environment, good health care, and positive support from family, friends, and the community enable people with Down syndrome to lead fulfilling and productive lives.