What are common symptoms of Down syndrome?

Intellectual and Developmental Symptoms

Cognitive impairment, problems with thinking and learning, is common in people with Down syndrome and usually ranges from mild to moderate. Only rarely is Down syndrome associated with severe cognitive impairment.1

Other common cognitive and behavioral problems may include1,2,3,4:

  • Short attention span
  • Poor judgment
  • Impulsive behavior
  • Slow learning
  • Delayed language and speech development

Most children with Down syndrome develop the communication skills they need, although it might take longer for them to do so compared with other children. Early, ongoing speech and language interventions to encourage expressive language and improve speech are particularly helpful.5

​Parents and families of children with Down syndrome can connect with other families and people with Down syndrome from around the world to learn more and share information. The NICHD-led DS-Connect® is a safe and secure registry to help families and researchers identify similarities and differences in the physical and developmental symptoms and milestones of people with Down syndrome and guide future research. Learn more about DS-Connect®: The Down Syndrome Registry​.

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