Research on mental retardation

Essay by Rachel_2468High School, 11th grade November 2014

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What is Mental Retardation?

The nation as a whole has adopted different slang terms such as "retard", to insult others. Using terms like these are a way to call someone stupid, but there is a lot that they don't know or understand about children or people that suffer from mental disabilities. The study of the mental retardation is actually a very complex one, because there are many parts that build up the subject. The definition of mental retardation is significantly sub-average general intellectual functioning, existing concurrently with deficits in adaptive behavior and manifested during the developmental period or has limitations in their mental functioning. The disability affects a child's educational performance, making them limited in skills such as communicating, self-care, and social skills. These limitations cause a child to learn and develop slower than an ordinary individual.


There are over 200 causes of mental retardation. There are no exact causes for mental retardation but some things are associated with the disability for example childbirth difficulties, and a childhood brain injury can all lead to mental retardation.

Some doctors have found different systems for organizing the causes, sometimes they are divided into four groups these groups are socioeconomic and environmental factors, injuries, infections and toxins, and biological causes. They can also be divided into three groups by time of onset meaning by when the event or cause first occurred, including prenatal, perinatal and postnatal. Prenatal are causes that occur before birth for example Genetic conditions which are sometimes caused by abnormal genes inherited from parents or errors when genes combine. Another example is when; the pregnant mother takes toxins including alcohol, tobacco, and drugs. Toxins are both prenatal and postnatal causes of mental retardation, as well as of other disabilities. Perinatal are causes that occur during the birth process, they...