Adult learning disabilities - JSNA

Man and woman learning

People with a learning disability usually experience a greater range and complexity of health problems than the general population. They are known to have additional mental health needs; around 22% of those with a learning disability have dementia (compared with 6% of the general population) and rates of schizophrenia are around three times higher.  They also experience higher rates of epilepsy (22% compared with 1% in the general population), cerebral palsy and hypothyroidism.  Those with LDs have a higher prevalence of coronary heart disease, and respiratory, cardiovascular and musculoskeletal problems, including osteoporosis.  People with LDs also have higher levels of impaired vision (around 25%) and hearing problems (40%) than the non-learning disabled population.  They are more likely to have poor dental hygiene and dental care.  People with a LD are more likely than the general population to be either over- or underweight.

Unfortunately, statistically people with learning disabilities have a significantly shorter life expectancy.

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