Genetic disorders happen when there is a problem with a persons DNA. DNA is in almost every human cell. They carry genes. Genes make us who we are. Because of genes we inherit from our parents our hair and eye color. Unfortunately, we inherit many disorders as well. DNA is in the genes and it is different for every person in the world. DNA is like a fingerprint. When we are born we get two sets of genes - one from our mother and one from our father. Sometimes one or both of those genes carry disorders. In addition, genes can mutate. This means that it will change without any reason. Sometimes they can also change because of things in the environment. When a gene mutates it can also cause disorders.
Some disorders can cause physical disabilities. These disorders are caused by genes that affect our skeletal, muscular or nervous systems. Scientists are trying to identify the genes that cause these disorders, because they hope that if they know the genes they can prevent them from being passed on or that they can find medicine that will work to fix these genes.
One common genetic disorder that makes people physically disabled is called Muscular Dystrophy. This disease is progressive. This means that it gets worse with time. The disease makes the body muscles weak. This is because the body misses a gene that makes proteins that build muscles. A person who suffers from muscular dystrophy loses control of their muscles and will have to use walkers and wheelchairs. Also, other muscles like heart and lungs can become weak which is very dangerous.
There are many types of Muscular Dystrophy and a few of them affect boys more than girls. Unfortunately, there is no medicine or surgery that can heal muscular dystrophy. Many people who suffer from this disease get physical therapy to try to exercise and strengthen their muscles. Many also use assistive devices. Scientists are working to find Muscular Dystrophy genes because they are hoping to learn what causes this disease. If they knew what causes it, maybe they would be able to find a cure and help people not get this physical disabling disease.