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There are two main factors that influence a child and young person’s development

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The personal factors are a child’s genes which influence development and how the brain works. This influences a child’s personality, potential and health, which will later be influenced by their environment and how they are brought up.

Genetic information is what triggers a disability, such as Down’s syndrome. This means that they may have an impairment of cognitive ability and physical growth so they will need extra support in daily activities. They also have different facial characteristics which can lead to bullying. Cerebral palsy is a non-progressive non-contagious disability which is also developed at birth due to the brain. This affects motor conditions that cause physical disability in human development, resulting limits in movement and posture.

Health problems are also personal factors, such as Asthma which will affect the child’s breathing. Children may get breathless taking part in physical activities and will have to use an inhaler to open the airway. A Childs health will also be affected during pregnancy if the mother is taking drugs. This could result in premature birth and low birth weight which can then lead to a slower development rate.

A child may be born with a sight or hearing impairment which affects most areas of the child’s development. If a child is unable to see, they may not have had the opportunity to join in with physical activities, such as running or football, therefore they may be lacking in this area. If a child is deaf, they may not be able to communicate accurately to other people so will have little social skills.

Learning difficulties are also a factor that influences a child’s development. Children with learning difficulties will need extra support with certain areas of development and may develop a low self-esteem because they get annoyed with themselves for not being able to do something, such as a simple numeracy problem, or read a book.

If a child has language/communication difficulties, they may find it hard to socialise with people or join in with activities.

Socialising is very important, especially with children of a similar age, as they learn from each other, however a child may miss out if they have learning difficulties.

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