Mental Retardation
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Mental retardation refers to: "Significantly sub-average general intellectual functioning, resulting in or associated with concurrent impairments in adaptive behavior and manifested during the developmental period." Significantly sub-average intellectual functioning means an IQ of less than 70, which will lead to problems performing the routine, daily activities before the age of 18. Such behavior after the age of 18 would be termed ‘mental illness’.

Mental retardation Mental illness
Intelligence is low Intelligence is normal. After the illness, intelligence appears to be low.
Mental growth and activities are always much below what is expected of the particular age group. Mental growth and activities are normal
Psychiatric treatment is relatively unhelpful Psychiatric treatment is helpful.
Training and rehabilitation is the primary method of treatment. Training and rehabilitation are also useful.
Intelligence is affected first, and then emotions are affected. Emotions are affected first, and then intelligence is affected
Cause is mostly physical/environmental. Cause is mostly psychological.

Is it possible to increase a mentally retarded child’s IQ?
No, but medical care and proper training can assist their development.

How does rehabilitation/training help?
Rehabilitation/training encourages mentally retarded children to be independent and self-reliant, enabling them to interact better in the community.

Can rehabilitation alone effectively assist the development of mentally retarded children?
No, rehabilitation alone will not be effective. Strong parental supports, as well as assistance from the community, are vital to assist mentally retarded children to develop their potential to the fullest.

Are all mentally retarded children the same?
No, their medical conditions are different - and therefore, their IQ’s and behavior will also vary.

Mild mental retardation IQ 51-68
Moderate mental retardation IQ 36-50
Sever mental retardation IQ 21-35
Profound mental retardation IQ 20 or less
Immediately after delivery, a doctor is able to assess whether a baby is at risk of being mentally (or physically) handicapped. Doctors utilize the “APGAR Score” to assess newborn babies.
Sign 0 1 2
Heart rate Absent Below 100 Over 100
Respiratory effect Absent Slow and irregular Good crying
Muscle tone Limp Some fusion of extremities Active motion
Response to catheter in nostril No response Grimace Cough or sneeze
Color Blue, pale Body pink, extremities blue Completely pink
Scoring 8 to 10 is Normal baby. Less than 7 is High-risk baby.
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