IDD is an acronym that stands for “intellectual and developmental disabilities.” Individuals with IDD face many challenges in their lives, and usually need help in order to perform normal functions of life. Some common disabilities included within IDD are:

  • Down syndrome
  • Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs)
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Brain injury
  • Behavior disorders
  • Spina bifida
  • Fetal alcohol syndrome

These are only a few examples of the disabilities that make up the broader term of IDD. Living with conditions like these often means that individuals with IDD require assistance from family members or caretakers in their daily lives.

There is a large IDD population within the United States, with over 7 million people living with IDD. Furthermore, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that around 1 out of every 33 children—about 3%—are born with conditions stemming from issues in prenatal development.

With millions of individuals affected by IDD, it’s important to determine how to help them. So, what does the IDD community need? What support can we provide to assist these individuals? In this article, we’ll discuss how individuals with IDD can live long, fulfilling lives.

Ways for Individuals With IDD To Lead Rewarding Lives

  • Safe Communities and Residences – Some of the key needs for individuals in the IDD community to live long, fulfilling lives are safe communities and residences. Since these individuals often require support in their daily lives, providing them with a secure living environment helps them to remain safe, get the assistance they require, and lead a rewarding life.

Community residences—also referred to as group homes—often include help with everyday tasks, 24-hour supervision, housemates with similar needs and challenges, activities, meal plans, and more. The level of care is usually tailored to the specific needs of residents, so individuals with IDD are always getting the support and care they require.

  • Medical Support – Since many individuals with IDD have some sort of behavioral, physical, or mental disability, they often require specific medical care. Many community residences will provide care by having nurses or direct support professionals (DSPs) on staff. These individuals ensure that all residents are healthy and receive the care they need each day. However, some individuals with IDD may require more intensive medical care. It’s crucial that these individuals routinely visit their doctors so that their conditions don’t go unchecked and they can get the expert care they require. Making sure these individuals get the proper care that they need can help them to live long and fulfilling lives.
  • Behavioral Services – As mentioned above, many individuals with IDD have behavioral disabilities that affect how they act and respond to things in their lives. In order to help them live a fulfilling life and have positive interactions, they may require behavioral services. These services can help instruct individuals with IDD on appropriate ways to behave in certain situations and can assist them in working through their problems. Common behavioral services include individual and group therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Interpersonal Therapy, Couples Therapy, and even Pet Therapy.
  • Life Skills and Activities of Daily Living (ADL) Training – Another essential way for individuals with IDD to lead rewarding lives is through life skills and activities of daily living (ADL) training. This training can involve working on important life skills, like practicing safety, improving social skills, reducing stress, and more. It can also focus on ADL, which include things like eating, bathing, dressing, walking, using the toilet, getting in and out of bed, and more.

This training usually involves nurses or DSPs working with individuals with IDD on ways to perform these everyday tasks on their own. This training is crucial to helping these individuals be as independent as they can, and contributes to a fulfilling life since they are able to experience some autonomy.

At New Concepts for Living (NCFL), our mission is to serve individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and it is the fundamental force that makes us the premier community for adults with IDD in New Jersey. We are committed to caring for and nurturing adults challenged with special needs so they can attain their highest level of wellness, independence, and achievement.

We do this with our meticulously maintained homes and caring staff, which enable us to provide the highest level of service for the individuals we care for. We also work to continuously improve our services and homes in order to provide the best care for our residents now and in the future.

NCFL also has an Adult Achievement Center Day Program that offers the most robust and diverse calendar of activities for those we serve. We recognize the need for quality services for every extraordinary individual in northern New Jersey and are committed to expanding. NCFL is currently building new community residences (group homes) in Old Tappan, Mahwah, Hillsdale, and Upper Saddle River—as well as planning to open a larger Day Program Facility in 2023 — and is dedicated to finding ways to further expand and grow to better serve our community! You can learn more about the work we do, make a donation to support our mission, contact us for more information, or request placement for a loved one today!

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