Severe Mental Retardation

Severe mental retardation refers to the condition of possessing an IQ less than 50 with the patient being able to be learn basic language, hygiene, and work skills. Persons suffering from this condition were, in the past, referred to by the now obsolete term “imbecile.” In the case of special education placement the persons are referred to as “trainable” mentally handicapped. The DSM-V now refers to mental retardation as intellectual disability. With education and training people at this level of intelligence are capable of basic functioning in regards to self-care and hygiene and may even be capable of working in a sheltered or observed situation. The DSM-V classifies four different degrees of intellectual disability: mild, moderate, severe, and profound.