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While most people have 23 pairs of chromosomes (46 chromosomes in total) that make up their cells and DNA, some individuals are formed in the womb with an extra copy of a chromosome, for a total of 47.

This additional chromosome causes a condition called trisomy, a word that comes from Greek meaning “tri” for three, and “somy” meaning chromosome, indicating an extra in what is meant to be a pair.

Trisomy conditions may create a wide range of health issues impacting the physical health as well as causing cognitive issues.

The most commonly known form of this condition is Trisomy 21, also called Down Syndrome. Trisomy Awareness Month exists to increase public knowledge and understanding about trisomy conditions, educating and promoting community support for individuals and families affected by trisomy.

History of Trisomy Awareness Month

Trisomy Awareness Month has been celebrated for over a decade, since its inaugural celebration in 2013. The event was chosen to take place in March as a nod to the “tri” in trisomy, because March is the third month of the year.

By 2014, Trisomy Awareness Month grew in scope, with the National Institutes of Child Health and Development getting involved, along with a range of other organizations.

How to Celebrate Trisomy Awareness Month

Get involved and show support to those in the community affected by trisomy by observing Trisomy Awareness Month, starting with some of these ideas:

Learn More About Trisomy Conditions

Individuals, families, communities, schools, and others can get more involved with Trisomy Awareness Month by becoming more informed and educated about some of the factors related to trisomy conditions.

Do some research at the local library or get started with some information here:

  • Trisomy 21 (Down Syndrome) affects around 1 in 800 births in the US each year, often resulting in a range of physical health challenges as well as cognitive impairment or mental struggles
  • Trisomy 18 (Edwards Syndrome) is a rare condition that results in low birth weight, and slow growth and is often life-threatening
  • Trisomy 13 (Patau Syndrome) is extremely rare and most often causes fatalities in babies

Raise Awareness About Trisomy

An excellent way to get involved with Trisomy Awareness Month is to learn more – and then share – about this genetic condition that affects hundreds of thousands of families across the nation.

Make a post on social media to encourage others to get involved with supporting and caring for those families affected by trisomy who may need help with certain needs.

Support a Trisomy Organization

A great way to get involved with Trisomy Awareness Month, whether personally impacted by the condition or simply desiring to do more to support this community, would be to act in support of a non-profit organization.

This might be volunteering in a local community center, helping out with fundraising or making a donation personally.

A few of the organizations that are connected with trisomy support include:

  • The Trisomy 18 Foundation
  • Support Organization for Trisomy (SOFT)
  • National Down Syndrome Society
  • Hope for Trisomy 13 and 18

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