Down Syndrome In Teens – Everything You Need To Know

Down Syndrome In Teens

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Does your teen suffer from sudden hypothyroidism? Do you find that your teen has learning difficulties? Does he suffer from excessively dry skin? If you answered yes, your teen may have Down syndrome. If your teen exhibits any such symptoms, seek immediate medical attention. What is Down syndrome in teens? How does it occur? How do you treat it? Read on to learn the answers.

What Is Down Syndrome?

Down syndrome is a genetic disorder that occurs due to abnormal cellular division, which leads to the growth of an extra genetic material from chromosome 21. Down syndrome is a chronic condition and often leads to lifelong intellectual disability and health issues. So, it is important you have the right knowledge about down syndrome in teenagers.


Down syndrome is a genetic disorder and has three main causes:

Trisomy 21:

The most common cause of Down syndrome is Trisomy 21. Trisomy 21 typically exhibits three copies of chromosome 21 in its cells.

Translocation Down Synd

Translocation Down syndrome occurs when a part of chromosome 21 attaches to another chromosome. This variation features two copies of chromosome 21 in the cells.

Mosaic Down Syndrome:

Mosaic Down syndrome is one of the rarer causes of Down syndrome. Mosaic Down Syndrome patients have some cells with additional copies of chromosome 21 (1).

[ Read: Symptoms Of Learning Disabilities In Teens ]

Symptoms Of Down Syndrome In Teens:

Down syndrome is a painful condition, both for your teen and you. He will exhibit physical and psychological symptoms, which include:

Psychological Symptoms:

1. Unhappiness:

Teens suffering from Down syndrome are often sad. You will observe a loss of liveliness and spontaneity in your teen.

2. Apathy:

Teens who suffer from Down syndrome exhibit loss of interest in social or family settings. They tend to withdraw themselves from family and friends.

3. No Independent Skills:

Teens with this genetic disorder lack independent skills. You will need to do basic stuff for them, like lacing up their shoes.

[ Read: Tips To Make Your Teenager Independent ]

4. Change In Eating Habits:

You will notice a change in the eating habits of the teens suffering from Down syndrome. Your teen will either eat too little or too much.

[ Read: Common Eating Disorders In Teens ]

5. Change In Sleeping Habits:

You will find that your teen tends to sleep very little or for long hours.

6. Psychomotor Agitation:

Your teen will tend to make unintentional, directionless, and purposeless motions, such as pulling and pushing things back.

7. Psychomotor Retardation:

Your teens will be slow in performing the usual easy activities.

8. Psychotic Features:

Your teen may hallucinate, self-talk, or suffer from extreme withdrawal from normal activities (2).

[ Read: Asperger’s Syndrome In Teens ]

Physical Symptoms:

  • Hypothyroidism:

Most teens with the genetic disorder of Down syndrome suffer from hypothyroidism. The thyroid gland fails to secret enough thyroid hormone.

  • Skin disorder:

Down syndrome affected teens tend to have dry skin. They are susceptible to eczema. Boils and folliculitis are quite common in these teens.

  • Other symptoms:

Other common symptoms of Down syndrome are poor muscle tone, excessive flexibility, short height, short head and neck, short hands and feet and flattened facial features (3).

Treatment For Down Syndrome Teenagers:

Unfortunately, there is no cure for Down’s syndrome. It is a chronic condition, and your teen will have to live with it. With some therapy, you can prevent the onset of thyroid disorder and heart problems. Counseling helps motivate your teen and helps him live his life with courage and spirit. The medical assistance helps reduce the intensity of the symptoms. Some of the best ways to provide medical assistance include:

  • Early intervention and educational therapy
  • Participation in physical and social activities
  • Treatment therapies
  • Drugs and supplements
  • Assistive devices (4)

We hope you found this article informative. Do you have any experiences to share? Tell us about them below.