Caring for the Mentally Challenged

Just as parents may need care when they develop certain health conditions children who are mentally challenged also need special care when they become adults. The special needs of such children become complicated as they reach puberty.

Care Options Available

Family members. Many adult children live at home with family members as their primary care providers. According to one web source, 76% of individuals with developmental disabilities live at home. In a quarter of these situations, the average age of the adult child was 38; caregivers were age 60 or older.

Home health aides or personal care attendants. Depending on the child’s level of need, these providers come into the home to help family members in a variety of ways. In addition to providing respite to family members and being a companion to the adult child, home aides assist with duties requiring more physical strength or perform specific assignments such as bathing and dressing.

Community-based homes and supported living arrangements. Adults living in group homes enjoy some independence, but receive support as necessary depending on their needs. Caregivers living or working at these homes provide a range of services, from supervision to help with medication to advice on getting to work and dressing appropriately.

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Getting medical care for the mentally challenged can be excruciating in terms of bills. It is also a fact that not everyone has access to health insurance thus the need for help.


Receiving the proper care for your mental health condition is essential to your recovery. The best treatments are the ones prescribed by a doctor or mental health practitioner, and that may include counseling, medication, support, diet and exercise, and alternative therapy among others. Unfortunately, visiting mental health providers and paying for many of these treatments can be expensive. Not all people have access to affordable insurance. Whether you’re insured or not, and whether that insurance coverage is adequate, there are ways that you can find help paying for your care.

Many people with mental illness become eligible for Medicaid by qualifying as disabled, either as children or as adults after age 19. Adults determined to be disabled receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) from the Social Security Administration. SSI provides a small amount of monthly .

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When we decide to become selfish and not care for the mentally challenged we are creating a man-made disaster. There is a lot of financial burden left to the government. A burden that sees cuts everywhere including cuts on the assistance for the mentally challenged. The government cannot do everything.

States have been reducing hospital beds for decades, because of insurance pressures as well as a desire to provide more care outside institutions. Tight budgets during the recession forced some of the most devastating cuts in recent memory, says Robert Glover, executive director of the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors. States cut $5 billion in mental health services from 2009 to 2012. In the same period, the country eliminated at least 4,500 public psychiatric hospital beds — nearly 10% of the total supply, he says.
The result is that, all too often, people with mental illness get no care at all.

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