Tarih: 27/03/2019


Girne American University (GAU), Faculty of Education Special Education Teaching Department faculty member Yılmaz Avcu, released statements about individuals because of March 21 World Autism Awareness Day.

Avcu in the statement regarding March 21 has said that; The day formalized by United Nations and accepted as World Down Syndrome Awareness Day and as such, is being commemorated around the world with various events. Avcu continued with; aim of the day is to create societal awareness about Down Syndrome, preventing such individuals from facing discrimination and prejudice, and draw attention to importance of sustained and early education, and asked “How much do we know about Down Syndrome?”

What is Down Syndrome?

Down Syndrome is difference in genetics, a chromosome anomaly. Simplest explanation is that in individuals with down syndrome has 47 chromosomes as result of having three chromosome 21, while regular humans have 46 chromosomes. Down Syndrome is not an illness to be treated but a genetic difference. (Due to this difference, awareness day has been chosen as March 21). It happens because Chromosome 21 pair has an extra chromosome as a result of fault in cell division process.

How do 47 Chromosomes happen?

Of the chromosomes that creates the human body, 23 of them are from mother while other 23 is from father. In Down syndrome chromosome there are 3 chromosome 21 instead of 2 (because of this, it is also known as Down syndrome is known as Trisomy 21). As a result of this total number of chromosomes are 47 instead of 46. Colloquially called +1 chromosome difference.

Does it have different types?

There are three types of Down syndrome. These are; Trisomy 21, Translocation, Mosaicism.

How is Down Syndrome Diagnosed during pregnancy?

Down syndrome can be diagnosed by triple screening test, double screening test, ultrasonography and other tests during pregnancy. In addition, definitive diagnosis is made with amniocentesis and CVS (which is process of collecting small amounts of chorionic villus). If detection of genetic discrepancy is detected the family is given information about the subject.


What are Signs of Down Syndrome?

First, it is evident with its unique facial appearance that we all immediately notice. Of course, the facial appearance is not enough for the symptom. Other symptoms of Down syndrome will help you to identify it.

The palm lines are singular.

They are shorter.

They have almond-shaped eye structure.

Palpebral (eyelid) slit.

They have a flattened and arched nose.

The little fingers are more looped (inward, flexible).  Abdominal structures are loose and more cambered.

Because of low muscle control, babies are unable to hold their heads and have difficulty walking.

They have large gaps between the big toe and the other toes.

In addition, Down syndrome should be considered if there is a sagging tongue structure. If all these symptoms are present at same time, a specialist should be contacted for help.

How does Intelligence of Children Who Have Down Syndrome Develop?

The development of a baby who was born with Down`s syndrome, even though they might seem like their peers who developed normally, their ordeals will get more difficulty as they age. Learning difficulties in children only begin to manifest themselves with certain differences after one year of age. These kids can start forming sentences at 2-3 years old. So, they need special training. Therefore, the intensive and systematic education of these children as well as their early education will contribute to improvements in intelligence levels and skills. This way, their life levels will increase, and they will be able to adapt to the society faster and reach to the point of being able to live a normal life.

What Can My Child with Syndrome Do in Future?

Perhaps all of us have heard about success of these kids and them being able to reach self-sufficient levels.

These individuals can also successfully graduate from high school and university. An even learn a new language. They can work in any workforce and live independent or semi-independent lives. Therefore, when we have a child with Down`s syndrome, we should not limit our dreams. When we put a limit on our dreams, we put a limit on our child with down`s syndrome and limit him ourselves. Therefore, we should not forget that the key to every child`s happiness is to make realistic and down to the earth future by correctly evaluating our children with which also applies to children with Down`s syndrome as well.