NICE Guideline CG142 - Autism spectrum disorder in adults: diagnosis and management
Lower intellectual ability (usually defined as an IQ of less than 70) that leads to problems in learning, developing new skills, communication and carrying out daily activities. Learning disability severities are defined by the following IQ scores: mild=50-69, moderate=35-49 and severe=20-34. A person with a mild to moderate learning disability may only need support in certain areas. However, a person with a moderate to severe learning disability may have no speech or limited communication, a significantly reduced ability to learn new skills and require support with daily activities such as dressing and eating. Learning disabilities are different from 'learning difficulties', like dyslexia, which do not affect intellect. Learning disability is sometimes also called 'intellectual disability'. (CG142) In line with NICE's guideline on challenging behaviour and learning disabilities, a learning disability is defined as meeting 3 core criteria: - lower intellectual ability (usually an IQ of less than 70) - significant impairment of social or adaptive functioning - onset in childhood. A person's learning disability may be described as mild, moderate, severe or profound. Learning disabilities are different from specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia, which do not affect intellectual ability. (NG93)
NICE Guideline NG54 - Mental health problems in people with learning disabilities: prevention, assessment and management
Learning disabilities are commonly divided into 'mild', 'moderate', 'severe' and 'profound', but these categories are based on IQ and most UK health and social care services do not measure this. Therefore, this guideline uses the terms 'milder learning disabilities' (approximating to mild and moderate learning disabilities that are often defined as an IQ of 35 to 69 and impairment of adaptive functioning with onset in childhood) and 'more severe learning disabilities' (approximating to severe and profound learning disabilities that are often defined as an IQ of 34 or below with impairment of adaptive functioning with onset in childhood). All people with learning disabilities: - need additional support at school - need support in some areas of adult life, such as budgeting, planning, time management, and understanding complex information - need more time to learn new skills than people who don't have learning disabilities. Milder learning disabilities People with milder learning disabilities: - may be able to live independently and care for themselves, managing everyday tasks and working in paid employment - can often communicate their needs and wishes - may have some language skills - may have needs that are not clear to people who do not know them well. More severe learning disabilities People with more severe learning disabilities are more likely to: - need support with daily activities such as dressing, washing, food preparation, and keeping themselves safe - have limited or no verbal communication skills or understanding of others - need support with mobility - have complex health needs and sensory impairments.
Plain English definition
Think Local Act Personal (TLAP) Jargon Buster
A term that is used to describe a brain impairment that may make it difficult for someone to communicate, to understand new or complex information, or to learn new skills. The person may need help to manage everyday tasks or live independently. Learning disability starts in childhood and has a lasting effect on a person's development. It can affect people mildly or severely.