Cognitive and Perceptual Deficits
Also known as: perceptual and cognitive disorder, functional impairments, cognitive and perceptual dysfunction.
What are cognitive and perceptual deficits?
- Cognition is the mental process that allows us to acquire information and knowledge - it allows a child to understand and act in the world around him/her. It includes: language, memory, attention, judgment, a knowledge base, reasoning, and planning and other important mental abilities.
- Perceptual deficits are one of the types of learning disorder which may involve: information entering the brain (input), how information is processed and interpreted (integration), how memory is stored and recalled (memory), how information is used (output). It is how a child perceives what they see or hear.
Both may be mild, moderate or severe.
What causes cognitive and perceptual deficits?
Risk factors include those before birth: prenatal (before birth) genetic and chromosomal abnormalities, abnormalities in the way a baby’s organs function (metabolic disorders), brain abnormalities, maternal disease and environmental factors (like toxins etc.).
During labor and after birth (perinatal and postnatal): lack of oxygen to the baby’s brain (hypoxia), infections, birth trauma (difficulty during delivery), seizure disorders, severe social deprivation and other causes.
It may be associated with other common mental and neurodevelopmental abnormalities like Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Syndrome (ADHD) and others.
What are the symptoms of cognitive and perceptual deficits?
Symptoms vary widely and range from mild difficulties in specific parts of functioning to profound intellectual impairments. If you have any anxiety regarding your child’s development and/or daily mental or social functioning (compared to siblings or other children), bring them to the attention of your Pediatrician who will assess your child and refer your child if necessary for appropriate neurodevelopmental testing.
What are the care options?
While there is no cure for intellectual disabilities, early diagnosis and management by a multidisciplinary group of medical personnel is recommended to enhance all areas of your child’s functioning as needed.
Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP
This page was last updated on: September 09, 2020 11:17 AM
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Learn more about
Attention Deficit and Learning Disorders (ADHD)
Attention deficit disorder with or without hyperactivity (ADHD) is the most common behavioral disorder of childhood, affecting 3 to 7 percent of school-age children.
Applied Behavioral Analysis
ABA Therapy is the use of science-based techniques and principles to produce meaningful and positive changes in behavior which can help children reach their full potential.
A psychiatric evaluation is an evaluation process with a mental health professional, designed to diagnose and treat (using both medications and other therapies), emotional, behavioral or developmental conditions or disorders.
A neuropsychological test is a medical exam to evaluate the function of the brain. It’s often used for assessing the brain and behavior after an injury or as the result of a central nervous system disease.