Tourette’s Syndrome

Tourette Syndrome

Tourette Syndrome

Tourette’s syndrome is a brain disorder characterized by abnormal and involuntary body jolts or vocal productions called tics.

Symptoms of Tourette syndrome:

Most people with Tourette’s syndrome experience a strong and unbearable feeling before a tic called a premonitory sensation which only goes away after the tic happens. Common examples of these sensations include:

  • An irritable feeling in the throat before grunting
  • A feeling that one’s eyes are burning before blinking

Tics can be:

  • “Motor” tics such as exaggerated uncontrollable blinking of the eyes or grimacing of the face
  • “Phonic” tics such as recurrent grunting or explosive outbursts of obscenities

Stress, sleep deprivation, and anxiety can all exacerbate Tourette’s syndrome.
The onset of Tourette’s syndrome typically occurs before seven years of age but can also develop later on in life and in adulthood.

Diagnosing Tourette’s

People receive a diagnosis of Tourette’s syndrome if they have had multiple episodes of tics over a one-year period.

Diagnosing Tourette’s

The exact cause of Tourette’s syndrome remains unknown. A person is at increased risk of developing Tourette’s syndrome if there is a family history of this condition. People with Tourette’s syndrome usually have other coexistent health conditions such as obsessive-compulsive disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or a learning disability.

Treatment for Tourette’s syndrome

There is no cure for Tourette’s syndrome, and treatment is not necessary for most people with tics. However, there are ways to help manage and control tics if they persist, worsen, or become too problematic.

  • Behavioral therapy reduces the severity and frequency of tics. Includes

    • Habit reversal training (HRT) and
    • Exposure and response prevention (ERP)
  • Medication is reserved for more severe cases that profoundly interfere with functioning, but these meds have adverse effects and should only be used sparingly and with caution.

Symptoms of Tourette syndrome:

Most people with Tourette’s syndrome experience a strong and unbearable feeling before a tic called a premonitory sensation which only goes away after the tic happens. Common examples of these sensations include:

  • An irritable feeling in the throat before grunting
  • A feeling that one’s eyes are burning before blinking

Tics can be:

  • “Motor” tics such as exaggerated uncontrollable blinking of the eyes or grimacing of the face
  • “Phonic” tics such as recurrent grunting or explosive outbursts of obscenities

Stress, sleep deprivation, and anxiety can all exacerbate Tourette’s syndrome.
The onset of Tourette’s syndrome typically occurs before seven years of age but can also develop later on in life and in adulthood.

Diagnosing Tourette’s syndrome:

People receive a diagnosis of Tourette’s syndrome if they have had multiple episodes of tics over a one-year period.

Causes of Tourette’s syndrome:

The exact cause of Tourette’s syndrome remains unknown. A person is at increased risk of developing Tourette’s syndrome if there is a family history of this condition. People with Tourette’s syndrome usually have other coexistent health conditions such as obsessive-compulsive disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or a learning disability.

Treatment for Tourette’s syndrome:

There is no cure for Tourette’s syndrome, and treatment is not necessary for most people with tics. However, there are ways to help manage and control tics if they persist, worsen, or become too problematic.

  • Behavioral therapy reduces the severity and frequency of tics. Includes

    • Habit reversal training (HRT) and
    • Exposure and response prevention (ERP)
  • Medication is reserved for more severe cases that profoundly interfere with functioning, but these meds have adverse effects and should only be used sparingly and with caution.
Source KIDS HEALTH