Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
ADHD is more common in individuals
with Down syndrome than it is in the general population. Standard medications
for ADHD are generally effective in adults with Down syndrome, along with behavioral
intervention, appropriate supervision, and strategies such as activity schedules
and visual reminders.
Autism is diagnosed in 5-10%
of people with Down syndrome, compared to only 0.13% of the general population.
Nurses can be instrumental in obtaining behavioral services for these clients,
as well as respite care to relieve caregivers.
People with intellectual disabilities are often noted to have significant traits of perfectionism: their need for routine and dislike of change will cause them to be very regimented. The compulsions that someone with OCD suffers from may be mistaken for this perfectionism. (Hudak, J. 2015)
Although obsessions are rare in individuals with Down syndrome, compulsive behaviors occur more often. Some compulsive behaviors, such as manipulating straws or stuffed animals, are relatively harmless. Others, such as hair-pulling or continual hand-rubbing, can cause damage to the hair or skin.
Adults with Down syndrome show somewhat different symptoms of depression than non-disabled adults. The following symptoms are often associated with depression in adults with Down syndrome:
Because adults with Down
syndrome often develop depression after a loss, its important for nurses
to assess for symptoms in patients following the death of a family member, change
in roommates, retirement of a caregiver, or other loss-related events. Since
depression can cause many symptoms indicative of Alzheimers disease, its
important to carefully report symptoms and changes in behavior to the clients
primary health care provider. Standard antidepressant medications, including
SSRIs, are used in adults with Down syndrome.