Tuesday, 30 May, 2023

Awarness a Must to Conquer Neurodevelopmental Disabilities

Md Zakir Hossain

Awarness a Must to Conquer Neurodevelopmental Disabilities
Md Zakir Hossain

People with disabilities are part of human diversity. Due to various physical and intellectual limitations, they are out of the mainstream of society. The government is working to ensure a normal life for them by bringing them into the mainstream of society. According to the Rights and Protection of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2013, the types of disabilities are autism, autism spectrum disorders, physical disabilities, mental disabilities, visual disabilities, speech disabilities, intellectual disabilities, hearing disabilities, hearing-visual disabilities, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, multidimensional disabilities and other disabilities.

Among the four types of disabilities - autism, autism spectrum disorders, Down syndrome, intellectual disability, cerebral palsy is also called neuro-developmental disability or NDD for short. According to the disability identification survey conducted by the Department of Social Welfare, the total number of disabled persons in the country is 29,99,839, of which 78,216 have autism, 6,014 have Down syndrome, 2,06,987 have intellectual disabilities and 1,13,160 have cerebral palsy.

Autism spectrum disorders is a complex disorder of normal brain development due to which people with this characteristic do not have any defect in physical structure, but they cannot establish proper communication with the environment, such as not being able to use language. Among the well-established symptoms on the autism spectrum are limitations in verbal or nonverbal communication; limitations in social and interpersonal behavior, communication and imaginative action; Repetition of the same or limited actions or behaviors.

It is important to change some of the common ideas about NDD. Many parents think that autism is not a disability, but the reality is that autism is a type of disability. Only children get autism the reality is it is a lifelong condition. However, the symptoms appear in childhood.

It is a common misconception and superstition in society that children are disabled because of the sins of their parents, the reality is, the cause of most disabilities is unknown. But whatever the cause of disability, parents have no control over it. So it is not right to blame or blame the parents for the child's disability.

Everyone believes that the child will get better only if they are cared for in a school or a service center. The reality is that only a limited period of care in a school or a service center is not enough. Besides, the condition of these children cannot improve without the continuity of care and services of the parents at home.

All people with autism have special skills. The reality is that some people with autism may have special qualities or skills, but not all of them will have special qualities or skills. Children with Down syndrome do not live very long.

It is not possible for people with Down syndrome and intellectual disability to go to work or employment. The fact is, if they get the appropriate training, they can work efficiently in most other fields except intellectual work.

It is not possible to prevent cerebral palsy. The fact is, cerebral palsy can be prevented in most cases through adequate nutritional food and proper care of the mother during pregnancy, proper decision and care during delivery and proper management of the newborn child.

It is a misconception that children with cerebral palsy do not get better with treatment, the reality is that with timely and regular proper medical care, they can lead a quality and almost normal life.

The government is sincere enough to ensure that children and people with neurodevelopmental disabilities lead a normal life. In 2013, it has formulated “Neuro-developmental Disabled Protection Trust Law” to improve their standard of living. As per law, Neuro-developmental Disabled Protection Trust has been set up in 2014.

It is our civic responsibility to play an assisting role so that the disabled get their due opportunities and services. If we accomplish the responsibility then disabled children and people will not become a burden; rather they will be able to play their important role in family and society. But there are pre-conditions of changing our mentality and attitude towards them.

There is no alternative but to create awareness about the issue of NDD. If you think that your child or any of your family member is behaving abnormally, take him/her to nearby healthcare centre or hospital. Make sure through physicians whether he/she has any impediment by conducting tests. If any family member is found to be disabled, don’t get nervous or keep him/her in hiding. Instead give him/her proper treatment and services. Bring him/her under the purview of disability detection survey that is conducted at the office of Social Welfare. Avail of the services being rendered by the Directorate of Social Welfare under the Ministry of Social Welfare, Jatiya Protibondhi Unnayan Foundation (National Disabled Development Foundation) and Neuro-Developmental Disabled Protection Trust.  Like other members of society, disabled people have an equal right to enjoy life in a free environment.


The writer is a Senior Information Officer (Public Relations Officer), Ministry of Social Welfare