Thursday, May 2, 2013


Widely believed as synonymous with low intelligence quotient (IQ) mental retardation is actually deficit in cognitive abilities as well as deficit in behavior required for social and personal sufficiency.

Types of mental retardation

1.      Mild
2.      Moderate
3.      Severe
4.      Profound
Mild type
Majority of children fall in this category. They are able to live independently and raise their families with support. IQ falls in the range of 50-70. They are referred to as educable.
Moderate type
10% of children are moderately retarded. They are called trainable. They are able to perform semiskilled work under support and supervision. IQ is between 50-35.
Severe type
With IQ between 35-20 these comprise of 4% of retarded children. They can learn small work related tasks.
Profound type
IQ lies below 20. They can learn to communicate for their needs.

Causes of mental retardation

Genetic causes are- Down’s syndrome, fragile x syndrome and many other genetic disorders
Acquired causes are- Prenatal infections, Drugs, Complications of pregnancy like diabetes, perinatal traumas and childhood infections and traumas.
Preventable causes of mental retardation include early detection of causes such as hurler syndrome, hunter syndrome, phenylketonuria, lesch nyhan syndrome. Early ultrasound scan during pregnancy can help in detection of congenital malformations generally associated with mental retardation.
Assessment of mental retardation
Scales psychologists used to measure IQ
Proper training and special school support can lead to improvement on child’s skills and ensure at-least independent living.

IQ ranges
Above 130 Genius
Between 110-130 superior
Between 110-90 normal
Between 90-80 dull average
Between 80-70 borderline
 Wishing you a happy and healthy life
Dr Hitesh Sharma
MBBS, MD (Psychiatry)

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