International Dwarfism Awareness Day Date in the current year: October 25, 2024

International Dwarfism Awareness Day International Dwarfism Awareness Day is observed annually on October 25. It was created to celebrate little people, raise awareness of the struggles that they have to face, and educate people about achondroplasia, which is the most common cause of dwarfism.

Dwarfism is a condition characterized by an exceptionally small height (less than 4 ft 10 in / 147 centimeters in adults). It can be disproportionate or proportionate. People with disproportionate dwarfism have either short limbs or a short torso; in people with proportionate dwarfism, both the limbs and torso are unusually short.

The appropriate terms for describing a person with dwarfism in modern English include dwarf (plural dwarfs, not dwarves), little person, LP, and person of short stature. The term midget used to be considered acceptable but is not anymore.

About 70% cases of dwarfism in humans are caused by achondroplasia, a genetic disorder that results in disproportionate dwarfism; people with achondroplasia have a normal torso but short arms and legs. Most other cases of dwarfism are caused by growth hormone deficiency. Other possible causes include malnutrition, various forms of skeletal dysplasia, Cockayne syndrome, Noonan syndrome, osteogenesis imperfecta, and other disorders.

In most cases of dwarfism, intellectual development is not affected. Most people with dwarfism do not have any serious health problems and have a normal life expectancy. They complete their education, build careers, and get married (or choose not to) just like people of average height. Women are typically able to bear children, although there are additional pregnancy risks depending on the underlying cause of dwarfism.

Many people with dwarfism deal with various physical and social barriers. Height discrimination is a frequent cause of bullying that can range from unconscious microaggressions to blatant ridicule. Children with dwarfism are particularly vulnerable to teasing from peers and may feel isolated, and adults with dwarfism may face employment discrimination. International Dwarfism Awareness Day was created to raise awareness of these other barriers, as well as to combat the stigma that surrounds dwarfism and dispel common stereotypes about the condition.

International Dwarfism Awareness Day was founded in 2012 by Little People of America (LPA), a non-profit organization that focuses on providing support and information to little people and their families. The date October of 25 was chosen to commemorate the birthday of LPA’s founder Billy Barty, an American actor and activist for people with dwarfism.

You can observe International Dwarfism Awareness Day by learning more about dwarfism and its causes, as well as physical and social barriers that people with dwarfism face. You can also participate in a Dwarfism Awareness Day event near you or even host one, donate to an organization that supports little people and their families, and spread awareness on social media with the hashtags #InternationalDwarfismAwarenessDay and #DwarfismAwarenessDay.

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