Cognitive Disabilities and Your Child with Blindness or Low Vision

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Children who have multiple disabilities that involve cognition or thinking have difficulty understanding information and processing it. A common cause of cognitive disabilities is an intellectual disability. A child may seem to have cognitive disabilities due to other impairments affecting their function. For instance, a child with blindness and severe cerebral palsy might have limited movement and observation abilities in daily activities.

When introducing your child to new items like a can opener in the kitchen, they may not initially understand it due to lack of exposure. With time and instruction, they can learn its function. It’s important for a Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments to assess a child with blindness or low vision and suspected cognitive impairment. This ensures the eye condition’s impact is considered.

Cognitive disabilities can hinder a child’s grasp of social interactions and appropriate behaviors. Children with visual and cognitive disabilities need many opportunities to interact and receive feedback on their social skills at their understanding level.

For routine tasks like dressing or retrieving mail, a child with visual and cognitive disabilities requires repeated practice. This helps them learn and remember each step of the process.