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Chapter 1 THE PROBLEM AND ITS BACKGROUND Introduction Mental retardation (MR) is a generalized disorder appearing before adulthood,

characterized by significantly impaired cognitive functioning and deficits in two or more adaptive behaviors. It has historically been defined as an Intelligence Quotient score under 70 (The relevance of IQ scores, 2010). When a person has certain limitations in mental functioning and in skills such as communicating, taking care of him or herself, and social skills, it is considered as mentally retarded. These limitations will cause a child to learn and develop more slowly than a typical child (medicinenet.com). The causes of mental retardation include hereditary conditions such as Tay-Sachs disease or fragile x-chromosome syndrome; early alterations in embryonic development such as trisomy 21 or maternal alcohol intake that causes fetal alcohol syndrome; pregnancy or perinatal problems such as fetal malnutrition, hypoxia, infections, and trauma; medical conditions of infancy such as infection or lead poisoning; and environmental influences such as deprivation of nurturing or stimulation. (Videbeck, 2008). It is a shocking and alarming fact that approximately 2.5 to 3% of the total population are mentally retarded which in most cases is a lifelong condition. Mental retarded children at homes are lifelong pain for parents. Proper handling and treatment can make them to live self sufficiently. Mental retardation is a developmental disability that can appear from the very birth of a child (Michael, 2007). About 7590% of the affected people have mild retardation. Non-syndromic or idiopathic mental retardation accounts for 3050% of cases. About a quarter of cases are caused by a genetic disorder. (Ardinger HH, Holmes GE, 2000). Unfortunately, some of these retarded children are from indigent families. Due to poverty, the parents cannot render proper care and needs to them such as enrolling to an exclusive school for special children that can really help to mold and enhance their existing abilities. On the other hand, there are also some

parents who can provide proper care for their child, still theyre thinking about the future of their children: who will take care of their children if they passed away, on how these children will face the reality by their own. As nursing students, it is our responsibility to provide a holistic care by giving idealistic ways in improving their health, in which every child has an opportunity to have a normal life like a normal people. Children with mental retardation benefit from a warm and loving home atmosphere (Bhagwagar, 2010). For a mentally retarded child, unconditional love is often lacking. Love, it is the most necessity for these children. It is the only secret and the easiest way in caring of mentally retarded children. Having a mentally impaired child in the family is really a challenging role, especially in the parents. And by giving the so called, love, the child can appreciate and feel that theyre not alone, even though theres something wrong with them. Its the feeling that theyre normal just like everyone else. To any child, unconditional love is probably the most vital element of his existence. By most definitions mental retardation is more accurately considered a disability rather than a disease. MR can be distinguished in many ways from mental illness, such as schizophrenia or depression. Currently, there is no "cure" for an established disability, though with appropriate support and teaching, most individuals can learn to do many things (Sevenich, 2009). A retarded child should never feel that he is neglected or avoided in his family. Help them to be a part of family occasions and get together's. Never shut them in a room for life long. Let them live in touch with the outer world, take them for a walk or shopping. Teach siblings to see the retarded child as their own brother or sister. Never feel ashamed of a retarded child as he/she is also your child with all the rights for your love and care. (Michael, 2007).

Statement of the Problem The present study aims to identify and describe the life world experience of a family with mentally retarded child in Manila through qualitative inquiry. It will answer the central question: What characterizes the life world experience of a family with mentally retarded child in Manila? Specifically, it seeks to answer the following questions: 1. What is the description of the life world experience of a family with mentally retarded child in Manila? 2. What are the needs that can be identified out of this research relavant to the nursing practice?

Significance of the study This case study about Mental Retardation may provide empirical data that may use by the respondents, street educators, teachers and trainers, nurse practitioners, nursing profession, nursing services and for the future researchers as a basis for formulation guidelines, organizational plans, evaluation techniques and management about the Mental Retardation Respondents: This case study will expand the knowledge of the respondents about the Mental retardation, not only expanding what they know but of course this study will give them right information that they must know in order to cope with Mentally retarded person. Nursing Service:

This case study will help nursing services have more sufficient facts, knowledge and data that they can use in managing Mental Retardation. It will help to understand what characteristics of Mental Retardation have. Street Educators, teachers, and trainers: This case study will help street educators, teachers and trainers in order to guide them how to deal and cope to the patient with mentally retarded, how will they approach and what type of training they will give to the client. Nurse practitioners: The outcome of this study will strengthen their understanding as well as their client, specifically to the special children. It will enable nurses in different settings to develop good management to their clients and their family. They could also develop programs that will enable the family to understand their situation. Nursing Profession: Nursing is a caring, in nursing profession, the outcome of the case study will heighten our understanding in our clients and in the family of our clients. This will lead to have encourage to provide a good quality of nursing care that will give to the client. For the future researchers: For the future researcher, this case study about Mental Retardation will help them to gather right information and complete data that will help them to accomplish their research.

Scope and Limitations of the Study This study was limited to the responses of the family with mentally retarded child that has been interviewed within Manila.

This study is focused on the life world of a family with mentally retarded children; identifying the description of their lived experiences. This study covers how families of mentally retarded children deal with their emotional issues, physical exhaustion and stress, school-related issues and financial concerns. This study was limited to children with mental retardation ranges from 2-18 years of age and residence of manila. This study includes three families with mentally retarded children. This study was further limited to the perception of the family for the picture of their lived experiences and will not include the broad aspects affecting other families with mentally retarded child. This study will be conducted on the month of January 2012 to March 2012.