What is a Developmental Disability?
A Developmental Disability is a severe, chronic disability that begins any time from birth through age 21, and is expected to last for a lifetime. Developmental disabilities may be cognitive, physical, or a combination of both.
How is one affected by a Developmental Disability?
While not always visible, these disabilities can result in serious limitations in everyday activities of life, including self-care, communication, learning, mobility, or being able to work or live independently. Such disabilities are almost sure to result in a lifetime of dependence on publicly funded services, unless families receive sufficient support, children receive appropriate education, and adults receive appropriate services that enable them to live and work in their local communities.
How common are Developmental Disabilities?
Approximately four million Americans have developmental disabilities. Developmental disabilities can occur in any family, no matter what their ethnic, economic, religious, or political background.