Physical disability facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts

A physical disability is a condition that limits the way the body works. For example, a physical disability may limit the way a part of the body grows, moves, or does what it is supposed to do.

Types of physical disabilities

Congenital disabilities

A congenital disability is a disability that a baby has when they are born, or had before they were born. These disabilities used to be called "birth defects."

The most common congenital disability is congenital heart disease - problems in the way the heart grows and works. In 2013, 34.3 million people around the world had congenital heart disease. Congenital heart disease also causes more deaths than any other congenital disability. In 2013, it caused 323,000 deaths.

Other examples of congenital disabilities include:

  • Fetal alcohol syndrome
  • Spina bifida, a problem with the way the spinal cord formed while a fetus was growing
  • Microcephaly, where the baby's head is smaller than usual
  • Problems with the way the brain, spinal cord, kidneys, or gastrointestinal system grew while a fetus was developing

Inherited disabilities

Some types of congenital disabilities are genetic. This means the disability was "inherited," or passed down to a person, through their parents' genes.

Examples of inherited physical disabilities include:

Acquired disabilities

Acquired disabilities are disabilities that people get ("acquire") after they are born. Often they are caused by injuries or illnesses. Examples of acquired physical disabilities include:

Famous people with physical disabilities

There have been many famous people with physical disabilities. Below are some examples.

Leaders and politicians



Other famous people

Related pages

Physical disability Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.