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Reply Prompt: Reply to 2 others by offering 1 new piece of information to add to their discussion of the different disorders




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Prompt 1:

The two neurological conditions that I would like to discuss are Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Down Syndrome. Both of these conditions occur in development and affect development as well. Both also lead to mental retardation, which Felder defines as a disability characterized by significant limitations, both in intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior involving conceptual, social, and practical adaptive skills (Feldman, 2011, p.308). In terms of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, it is a neurological condition that can occur in the pregnancy stage of development and affect the child’s mental capacity. Felder defines this condition as a disorder that is caused by the pregnant mother consuming substantial quantities of alcohol during pregnancy, potentially resulting in mental retardation and delayed growth in the child (Feldman, 2011, p.76). This is a result of neurons in the developmental stages of the infant’s brain being destroyed by the mother’s overconsumption of alcohol. This is even true for mothers who consume smaller amounts of alcohol. Some of these children eventually develop FAE or Fetal Alcohol Effects. Feldman defines this is “a condition in which display some, though not all, of the problems of those fetal alcohol syndrome” (Feldman, 2011, p.76).


As it relates to Down Syndrome, It is recognized as the most frequent cause of mental retardation. Felder defines this neurological disorder as one produced by the presence of an extra chromosome on the 21st pair; once referred to as mongolism. It is common in a much greater rate in women who are notably younger or notably older respectively. It occurs in about 1 out of every 500 births (Feldman, 2011, p.50). As mentioned with FAE, they are both a byproduct of damaged neurons. As stated by Dr. Gary Sibcy, we are all born with billions of neurons in the brain (Sibcy, 2014). Neurons are the metaphorical pistons to the brain—as they would be to the engine of a car. Neuronsthat fire together, wire together. Those neurons are essential for what Dr. Sibcy describes as “mature development” or “vertical integration” of the brain. This is where the brain is regulated from top to bottom and from the left to the right hemisphere (Sibcy, 2014). As it relates to the case of a child’s development being impacted by FAE, the right hemisphere, which controls the emotional, visual and spatial development, can be totally destroyed, thus rendering a child retarded.  


As it relates to what research suggests about the effects of the spiritual disciplines on neurobiology, Katya Rubia, of the Institute of Psychiatry, Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, states that the clinical application of meditation effects is still very much in its infancy (Rubia, 2009). However, there is growing evidence indicating that the spiritual discipline of meditation has shown positive effects on stress-related diseases and on some neuropsychiatric disorders (Rubia, 2009). Some of these, such as disorders of affect regulation and anxiety, In particular, are thought to benefit, given the attributed role of meditation techniques in the relief of stress and anxiety, on emotional resilience and mood regulation and neurobiological evidence for the up-regulation of underlying fronto-limbic neural networks that mediate affect regulation (Rubia, 2009).




Feldman, R. S. (2011). Development Across The Life Span-6th Edition. Upper Saddle River: Pearson.


Gary Sbcy, P. (Director). (2014). Presentation: Neurobiology [Motion Picture].

Rubia, K. (2009). The neurobiology of Meditation and its clinical effectiveness in psychiatric disorders. Biological Psychology, 1-11







There are many different disorders that can occur through out a child’s development. Some are manageable and the child can over come and lead a full-unhindered life. Some of these disorders can severely damage the child, stop normal growth and development, and even cause death. I chose to discuss cerebral palsy and dyslexia because the effect my life personally.

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a neurological disorder caused by damage to the brain. It can occur before, during, or after childbirth. It affects the body’s ability to move and regulate muscle coordination. Cerebral palsy has a broad range of its effects on the body. Some versions can be mild with manageable symptoms. While others require complete dependency for the rest of the individuals life. My fiancé has the latter.  According to (2013) children with CP can have a variety of adverse developmental issues: musculoskeletal disorder, pulmonary disease, seizures, cognitive impairments, and visual impairments. Musculoskeletal disorder effects mobility, bone formation, and balance. This is one of the most common and noticeable characteristic of CP. Pulmonary disease is a type of obstructive lung disease cause by poor airflow and the leading cause of death among children with CP. Seizures are abnormal or excessive synchronous neuronal activity in the brain. Between thirty and fifty percent of children with CP suffer from seizures. Cognitive impairment affects over one half of all children with CP. The severity of the motor impairment determines the amount of harm done to the brain. Visual abnormalities are common with CP and are treatable. The child might not be able to perceive words or sound like normal children will because of the damage to the brain. Children with CP will encounter many different symptoms that can impair their learning and development. It is important that they receive proper care and support from caregivers.  Depending on the severity of CP it can become manageable and children can grow up to become function members of society.

Dyslexia is a neurobiological-based learning disability where individuals have difficulties with word decoding, word recognition, and spelling (Taub 2011).  Dyslexia can also impact reading comprehension and vocabulary growth. I have a mid form of dyslexia, sometimes ill misread words or read things out of order.  Unlike other neurological disorders dyslexia has not distinguishing physical characteristics. Dyslexia can also hinder other aspect of a child’s development. Children with dyslexia can experience shame, low self-esteem, and depression. This can effect social, and physical development, as the child feels less confident around his or her peers. There is no one underlying cause for dyslexia, since it involves several cognitive processes it is difficult to pinpoint the exact cause (2011). There is no medical treatment for dyslexia however the best treatment is educational. Depending on the severity of the dyslexia a child can over come it with increased reading and cognitive function.

There is little research being conducted on the neurological effects of religion. According to Reich (2004) the psychologist of religion community has show little interest in neurological studies. Could that be an error on their part? According the apostle Paul “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Roman 8:28). Studying brain functions of people in deep prayer, meditation and contemplation could yield very fascinating results. Progress in neurobiology could potentially contribute to the further process of the psychology of religion. This could lead to spiritual break through as well. Having liked minded believers and non- believers in the same room is a great chance to glorify God and share our faith. As Christians we are all called to fulfill the great commission “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” (Matt 28:16-20). If as Christians we actually followed and believe what the bible instructs us to do imagine the difference in our world.




Dyslexia. British Journal of Hospital Medicine. (2011) Vol. 72, pp. 39-43


Innovait. (2013). Cerebral Palsy, The Author, Vol. 7, pp. 484-492


Reich, K. (2004). Psychology of Religion and Neurobiology: which Relationship. Archive for the Psychology of Religion, Vol. 26, pp. 117-133.


Taub, M (2011) Review of the Literature, Journal of Behavioral Optometry, Vol. 22, pp 48

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