Do you know the difference between Mental Illness and Mental Retardation (Cognitive Disability)?
Many people confuse mental retardation and mental illness or think they are the same. A child with a cognitive disability has below-average intelligence or mental ability and a lack of skills necessary for day-to-day living. People with cognitive disabilities can and do learn new skills, but they learn them more slowly. There are different levels of mental retardation. Most people who have it have a mild case. This presents a host of problems for the child, in particular once they get older. Often times they look normal. But they might say and do things that irk people and lead to the disabled person not having many friends or positive social interactions with others.
For instance, a young adult with a cognitive disability might carelessly pick their nose and eat their buggers in front of others. Or they might say things in conversations that don't fit the setting. The 25-year-old might even suck their thumb around other young adults who are highly conscious of being socially accepted. One of the behaviors that really distances some disabled youth from their peers is their asinine personalty. This type of personality can be a result of the excessive and constant corrections, put downs, and negative comments that the disabled person has had to deal with for years since the were young.
Which leads to my definition of mental illness, which is s a condition that affects a person's thinking, feeling or mood. Mental illness affects a person's ability to relate to others and function each day. Anyone can have mental illness, a doctor, computer engineer, or religious person. Mental illness has nothing to do with one's intellectual abilities.
People with cognitive disabilities, however, have one of the highest rates of mental illness. It is quite understandable when one understands the type of life many live. A person with a mild to moderate cognitive disability is very aware that they cannot understand and do things like others. They constantly see others "having a life" while their disability prevents them from participating in some of the day-to-day activities that other non-affected people indulge in. They are often left out of social activities because they just don't "fit" or they are embarrassing to those they are with.
to be continued, insha'Allah....