Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Student spotlights rare disorder in his newly published book

A Troubled Mind is a book published by Limkokwing University of Creative Technology that chronicles a journey of self-discovery by their student.
Thato Moruti, 21, a Public Relations degree student who was diagnosed with Ectodermal Dysplasia Syndrome (ED), speaks about how he came into his own with this disorder.

ED is explained as not only one but two or more abnormalities of ectodermal structures (tissues that cover the body like hair follicles, teeth, nails, sweat glands). Individuals affected by ED may have abnormalities such as dry and brittle nails that grow very slowly, inactive sweat glands that cause their bodies to overheat. Their hair may be sparse and lightly pigmented.

The abnormalities in their tooth buds cause their teeth to be peg shaped and pointed, and some absent. In his book, Thato speaks of his self-discovery in dealing with the humiliation by people because of his rare features that are a result of the ED syndrome. He recalls his aunt telling him that she did not know what was wrong with him.

Thato was diagnosed with ED when he was 12 years old and, while he was fascinated by the sophisticated name of his condition, he would later learn more about how it could affect one’s life.

When he grew older, he says in the book, “walking in the streets of towns and malls became unbearable”. Thato says rejection also caused him to seriously consider suicide.

In the book, he says that his challenge was to find himself, analyse and seek meaning in his life and a journey of self-discovery and accepting himself.
“Perhaps,” he says, “in the course of my challenges and trials in this book, you might find answers to many of your questions.”

A Troubled Mind includes a foreword by the founder of Limkokwing University, Dr Limkokwing, who says the university is happy to help Thato along in his dream to publish his book.
“The book itself has had a cleansing effect,” he says.

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The Telegraph September 23

Digital edition of The Telegraph, September 23, 2020.