Understanding Developmental Disabilities

What are developmental disabilities, and how are they different from other kinds of disabilities? What’s it like to have a developmental disability, or to care for somebody with one? We have answers.

Understanding Developmental Disabilities

What are developmental disabilities, and how are they different from other kinds of disabilities? What’s it like to have a developmental disability, or to care for somebody with one? We have answers.

Miaya Smiling

Defining Developmental Disabilities

Developmental disability is not just one thing—but all developmental disabilities relate to the brain, or parts of the brain, not developing as expected. Most developmental disabilities are present at birth and may be identified very early in life—before age three. Some common developmental disabilities include intellectual disabilities, autism spectrum disorder, Down syndrome, and cerebral palsy.

Living with a Developmental Disability

Developmental disabilities can affect social, behavioral, and communication functions. All children develop differently but, in general, children with developmental disabilities acquire skills at a slower pace than other children of similar age. Or, sometimes, not at all.

Daughter smiling with mother

Being a Caregiver

Caring for someone with a developmental disability is both rewarding and challenging. It takes patience, willpower, compassion, persistence, and a remarkable commitment. That’s why it’s also important for caregivers to take breaks and pay attention to their own needs to relieve stress.

Raise Your Voice

People with developmental disabilities need more than the love and support of their families and friends. They also need strong voices to speak for them out in the world. You can help. Damar can show you how.

Father and son hugging
Male staffer member conducting a training

Training and Learning Opportunities

Damar offers a wide range of opportunities to help caregivers, advocates, individuals, and organizations learn more about developmental disabilities—and how you can make a remarkable difference in the world. If you want to learn, we have the resources to get you started and keep you growing in your journey.

Jessica, Nancy, & Rebecca

Jessica, Nancy, and Rebecca are not related by blood, but they are truly family in every other sense of the word. Since coming together at Damar 11 years ago, their love for each other has only grown.

Jessica, Nancy, Dr. Dalton, and Rebecca
Jessica, Nancy, and Rebecca

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a developmental disability? What happens after an autism diagnosis? What services are available? What do you do next? We have answers to these questions and many others.

Questions?

Have questions? Looking for support? Get in touch with us to learn more.