Down Syndrome is a genetic condition that occurs at conception. Most people inherit 23 chromosomes from their mother and 23 chromosomes from their father. This means there are 46 chromosomes arranged in 23 pairs in every cell in our bodies. People with Down Syndrome have an extra copy of chromosome 21. A third chromosome in the pair is known as trisomy and this is why Down Syndrome is also known as Trisomy 21. This causes a range of physical characteristics and usually some degree of intellectual disability. There is also a greater risk of some medical conditions.
While there are some similarities among people with Down Syndrome, each person is unique and may have few or many of the characteristics in varying degrees. Each person with Down Syndrome is as different from each other as we all are.
People with Down Syndrome usually incur developmental delay meaning it is harder, and takes longer to reach physical and intellectual milestones. With the right help and support, people with Down Syndrome can achieve many things that the wider community is capable of and lead happy and satisfying lives.