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Independent Living for People With Disabilities - Topic Overview

Some teens and young adults with disabilities such as cerebral palsy or Down syndrome need extra help preparing for independent living.

Major independent living skills include preparing meals, managing money, knowing when and where to seek medical care, and using public transportation.

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Some adults with disabilities live at home until their parents pass away or are no longer able to care for them. These older adults may need the same level of training for independent living that teens and young adults require.

Community agencies help people with disabilities make the transition to independent living. Specially designed living spaces help some teens and young adults to live alone. Other teens and young adults choose to live in group homes, preferring the comfort of being around people and knowing that extra help is available if they need it.

Some people find it helps to:

  • Talk with other parents about how they have helped their children with disabilities adjust to independent living.
  • Find out about local agencies that help people with disabilities to live on their own.
  • Get in touch with an occupational therapist, who is trained to prepare people with disabilities for independent living.
  • Visit group homes in your community, and talk with people who live there.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: September 20, 2012
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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