How many people are affected/at risk for intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDDs)?

The exact number of people affected by IDDs is unknown. This is because IDDs cover a wide range of conditions, many of which are diagnosed several years after birth, rather than in newborns.

Current estimates suggest that 2% to 3% of children in the United States have some form of intellectual disability.1

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 1 in 33 newborns (or 3%) in the United States are born with conditions related to problems in prenatal development.2

For current statistics on the number of children born with specific types of these conditions, visit the CDC Data and Statistics webpage on birth defects.


  1. American Academy of Pediatrics. (2012). Health issues: Children with intellectual disabilities. Retrieved August 9, 2012, from external link
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2008). Update on overall prevalence of major birth defects-Atlanta, Georgia, 1978-2005. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 57, 1-5. Retrieved August 9, 2012, from
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