Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

2 Bumps

What is the difference between downs syndrome and autism?

Are they the same thing? I don't know anything on this topic. When it comes up in conversation I just have nothing to add because I've never researched it or known anyone affected... I'm 16 weeks pregnant and just took the blood test to look for downs and i'm kind of freaked out about it.

Answer Question

Asked by staciandababy at 2:20 AM on Jun. 24, 2012 in General Parenting

Level 38 (102,010 Credits)
Answers (14)
  • Down's syndrome is caused by an extra chromosome. There are physical and mental problems involved.

    Answer by Izsarejman at 2:27 AM on Jun. 24, 2012

  • What Iz said

    Answer by luvmygrlz at 2:58 AM on Jun. 24, 2012

  • There are soooooo very many differences, too many to list....they are definitely NOT the same thing at all....and please don't get freaked out about it...if you have a child with downs OR with Autism, you will love that child and he/she will bring you one amazing journey.....there will be challenges, but there will also be beautiful rewards...I have three children with autism and becoming involved in the community of those with developmental disabilities, I am also friends with many that have downs syndrome....I love my life and wouldn't trade it for the world ! (I wouldn't have picked it for myself, but now that I have it, I acknowledge I'm on a ride like no other - I'm not trying to sugar coat is hard....but there's nothing to be freaked out about....)

    Answer by FXmomTo3 at 5:39 AM on Jun. 24, 2012

  • I have an Uncle who has Downs, and my son has Autism. They are so very different. I will say, my Uncle is my heart! He is the sweetest, most gentle, pure of heart. There are just to many differences to even list. Don't be freaked by the test. I had to have it done, especially having an immediate relative with Downs. I wasn't worried at all. Having grown up in the same house with him, it is perfectly normal to me.

    Answer by tracy0812 at 5:48 AM on Jun. 24, 2012

  • The Triple Screen Test or AFP is performed around the 16th week of pregnancy to screen for increased risk of Down Syndrome. If your test comes back "positive for Down Syndrome" it means that you have an increased chance of having a baby with DS, (does)not (mean) that the baby actually has it.


    Mine had an over 20% chance of having DS. That's all the doctors wanted to talk about. Nobody at all mentioned the 80% chance he would not. Everyone (family!) kept brushing off my fears.

    I found a great site during the pregnancy that put the percentages into perspective. i'll look later for it and get back to you.


    Answer by feralxat at 5:58 AM on Jun. 24, 2012

  • Down syndrome is an extra chromosome on number 21. There are often heart conditions that need to be checked. However you should read up on DS before your child is born.

    Answer by oneforthemoney at 7:31 AM on Jun. 24, 2012

  • Apples to oranges. I could write and entire page full of differences but you really just need to look up the two completely separate disorders. But the simple answer? What Iz said. where as Autism is a social and developmental disorder- there is generally no physical or mental problems most Autistic individuals are of average or above average intelligence.

    Answer by But_Mommie at 8:06 AM on Jun. 24, 2012


    Understand the odds ratio

    Answer by feralxat at 8:48 AM on Jun. 24, 2012

  • So downs syndrome is a problem with the DNA and autism is a mental problem like ADD or depression kinda? Like, in the brain?

    Comment by staciandababy (original poster) at 3:52 PM on Jun. 24, 2012

  • Downs is a genetic syndrome which can range from mild to severe. The condition effects the person both physically and mentally. Physical abnormalities range from simply physical appearance to heart conditions. Mental capability is also effected. Slow development of cognitive ability then generally results in below average intelligence though it does not mean they have no special talents or that they can not positively impact there community- some even gown to become independent.

    Autism is a developmental and social disorder. This means the individual has delays typically in speech, fine motor and gross motor skills. It can range from mild to severe. Speech development can range from non-verbal to having full use of speech but unable to organize thoughts or use language in a social manner. Social delays also range from mild to severe. from being in 'their own world' to just being quirky or a loaner....

    Answer by But_Mommie at 4:21 PM on Jun. 24, 2012

Join CafeMom now to contribute your answer and become part of our community. It's free and takes just a minute.