Adolescents with Down Syndrome

How to Take this Course

Course Overview: Adolescents with Down syndrome today lead rich and active lives in their homes, schools, and communities. While they face many of the same health risks as their non-disabled peers, teens with Down syndrome also have particular issues that are addressed in a set of published health guidelines from the National Down Syndrome Society. Since weight management problems are almost universal in this population, this program contains specific guidelines for physical activity and dietary intake. Sexuality and intimacy concerns are addressed, along with methods for supporting the teen’s social development.

Teens with Down syndrome are capable of continuing significant gains in gross motor skills, fine motor abilities, speech and language, cognition, social development, and activities of daily living, if they receive appropriate education and support. Recommendations for educational and developmental support are highlighted in this course offering. Also included is a discussion of the formal transition process, designed to guide the adolescent from the school system to the work force. Nursing implications are highlighted, and family support recommendations are included. Please see Objectives for a specific list of the course goals.

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The target audience for this course is nurses who work with adolescents with Down syndrome in a variety of settings: inpatient and outpatient health care facilities, physicians’ offices and clinics, public and private agencies serving individuals with disabilities, home health, and case management.