This phrase is used for the description of people who have been subjected to a long term disability following injury to the mind, the body or a mixture of both of them before coming of age. Sometimes it is also employed as a phrase for the learning disabilities.

In fact this phrase is commonly employed in the United States; where it is used for reference to people who are impaired in three categories previously theability of independent living, personal care and economic insufficiency. In the West almost two percent of the people are affected with this disability. Whereas the statistics show that this ailment affects a little less than two percent people all around the globe. It is more prevalent among the males in contrast to the females. And as far as the location where this ailment strikes more often are the underprivileged areas where the rate of poverty is quite high.

The main causes that attribute to this ailment differ broadly and can be subcategorized into the social, physical and last but not the least the environmental factors. Amongst the very common causes are the injuries to the brain owed to natural disabilities following the complications during or post birth, problems in development because of nutritional nutrition, natural abnormality, over dose of medication and alcohol during pregnancy and last but not the least child abuse that may have an adverse reaction on his overall mental and physical health.

The education for people being afflicted by this sickness is very necessary along with the pre requisite training that will aid them later in life. Much focus and attention is being paid to the development of prospects for their inclusion in regular schools instead of the special ones, and the expansion in the later times is a testimony to this statement.