Sunlight Isn’t Enough

BY SUNIL J. WIMALAWANSA, MD, PHD, MBA, FACE, FRCP, FACP, FRCPATH, DSC Optimal Intakes of Vitamin D for Persons with Intellectual Developmental Disabilities: Almost Everyone Needs Vitamin D Supplements. Adequate vitamin D is essential for optimal health. In addition to the well-known effects of enhancing mineral metabolism, irrespective of the age, gender, or health status of the patient, vitamin D has beneficial effects on many other conditions, including neuromodulation, muscle strength and coordination, autoimmune disorders, […]

Epilepsy & Seizures Series • PART 4

It is very important for everyone to appreciate that the burden of care and the effects of the disease on the child necessitate adjustments in virtually all aspects of the lives of all family members. THE IMPACT OF LENNOX-GASTAUT SYNDROME ON FAMILIES Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS) is a severe form of childhood epilepsy that not only has a major impact on the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) of the affected children, but on their caregivers as […]

An Endless List Of Role Models

BY H. Barry Waldman, DDS, MPH, PhD & Steven P. Perlman, DDS, MScD, DHL (Hon) These heroes are living proof of the saying, “It is better to try and fail, than to fail to try.” Hope is the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best.1 Aspiration is a strong desire, longing or ambition.1 Hope and aspirations are the twin pillars which maintain the drive of […]

Becoming An Adult

GENETIC ALLIANCE The world’s leading nonprofit health advocacy organization committed to transforming health through genetics and promoting an environment of openness centered on the health of individuals, families, and communities. It is important to think ahead and consider the needs your child will have so that you can make sure those needs are covered without unnecessary interruption. BECOMING AN ADULT NAVIGATING THE HEALTHCARE TRANSITION PROCESS Becoming an adult comes with lots of changes: new responsibilities, […]

Ask Dr. Sheypuk Danielle Sheypuk, Ph.D.

With this column, I hope to open up a freer, franker discussion about dating, romance, and sexuality with a disability. I am so pleased to be launching my column, “Ask Dr. Sheypuk.” It is something that I have wanted to do for a long time now and something that is greatly needed in the community of people with physical disabilities and those in our family and social circles. One out of five Americans is affected by disability, […]

Nineteen Words

BY KIMBERLEE RUTAN MCCAFFERTY “Come here Justin,” I say quietly, and as always my towel-clad boy obeys, happily sliding into my lap for his post-bath cuddle. We have a routine for our bed-time ritual that we adhere to religiously, and I can tell my son enjoys the familiarity, smiling at each step in our path to bed. Tonight, however, I’ve decided to deviate just slightly from our norm, as I want to try something different […]

An Essential School Supply: The IHP

GENETIC ALLIANCE BY MONICA KORTSHA Discussing an individualized healthcare plan (IHP) with your child’s school nurse is one way you can prepare for the school year and make sure their special needs are addressed accordingly. It’s back-to-school time again. And whether your child will be enrolled in a traditional classroom, inclusive classroom or special education, it is important to ensure that your child’s educational environment will be the best fit for their unique needs (having […]

Health Coverage Options for Children with Special Health Care Needs

BY LAUREN AGORATUS, M.A. WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THEY AGE OUT OF CHILDREN’S PLANS? Parents may not be aware of all the choices available for insurance coverage for their children with special needs as they become young adults. Options can include continuing dependent coverage, as well as public and private insurance. It is important to note that children with special health care needs may be eligible for more than one type of plan. Parents and their […]