Learning Disabilities

Learning Disabilities

What are learning disabilities?

The most recent World Health Organisation publication uses the term ‘Mental Retardation’ rather then ‘Mental Handicap’ or ‘Learning Disability.’

Degrees of mental retardation are conventionally estimated by standardised intelligence tests which can be supplemented by scales assessing social adaptation in a given environment. These measures provide an approximate indication to the degree of mental retardation. The diagnosis will depend on the overall assessment of intellectual functioning by a skilled team of professionals.

Intellectual abilities and social adaptation may change over time and however poor may improve as a result of training and rehabilitation. Diagnosis should be based on current level of functioning.

Mild Mental Retardation
Approximately IQ range 50 – 69 (in Adults, mental age from 9 to under 12 years). Likely to result in some learning difficulties in school. Many adults will be able to work and maintain good social relationships and contribute to society.

Moderate Mental Retardation
Approximate IQ range 35 – 49 (in Adults, mental aged from 6 to under 9 years). Likely to result in marked developmental delays in childhood but most can learn to develop some degree of independence in self care and acquire adequate communication and academic skills. Adults will need varying degrees of support to live and work in the community.

Severe Mental Retardation
Approximate IQ range 20 – 34 (in Adults, mental age from 3 to under 6 years). Likely to result in continuous need of support.

Profound Mental Retardation
IQ under 20 (in Adults, mental age below 3 years). Results in severe limitation in self care, continence, communication and mobility.

How can SLT Online help?

As a highly qualified speech and language therapist, Julie Andrews is able to offer advice and help to her clients and their families in finding the best course of treatment for the individual.

To arrange a consultation or assessment with Julie please visit the appointments page.