For six months, she has been a member of parliament in a region with a population of 5 million. Never before has anyone with Down's Syndrome made it to parliament. But the Spanish Mar Galcerán does not shy away from responsibility. A conversation about disabilities, politics and relationships.
Down Syndrome is a disability caused by a deviation in the DNA. People who have this disability an extra copy of chromosome 21. Therefore, it is also called Trisomy 21 sometimes.
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What is Down Syndrome?
Down Syndrome occurs because of a chromosome deviation. Usually, people have sets of two chromosomes. However, people with Down Syndrome have an extra copy of the 21st chromosome. They are born with this trait.
This results in some specific physical traits. People with Down Syndrome are usually a bit shorter, have a flattened face and almond-shaped eyes that tend to slant up slightly. In addition, some common characteristics are small ears and a short neck.
Trisomy 21 may also impact people's IQ. On average, people with Down Syndrome have an intelligence quotient ranging between 30 and 70.
People with Down Syndrome cannot be cured. However, there are some therapies for those who struggle much because of this disability.
How does Down Syndrome impact the lives of those who have it?
Some people struggle more with the consequences of Down Syndrome than others. Some have a higher intelligent quotient and can function quite well in society. Others not so much.
Some people with Down Syndrome can get married as well. In some countries, there are quite good support measures to enable these people to live independently.