Tics have increased: My daughter is 1... - CHADD's ADHD Pare...

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Tics have increased

JoyousExpectation profile image

My daughter is 12 and she has always had tics - subtle things like a head twitch and hand motions. But in the last 3 months she has started to vocalize a sound: hmmm hmmm she says that over and over again.

She is currently NOT on medication. We have tried so many different medications and the ticcing got so much worse. The side effects were worse than the benefits so I have given up on meds for now but will try again in a year or so.

I don't have a question I just wanted to share this because it makes me so sad. I am concerned about her returning to middle school next year and other kids reacting to her repeating hmmm hmmm.

7 Replies

I feel for you! Our almost seventh grader son has inattentive ADD, is on the spectrum, and has intermittent tics. His come and go, but were decidedly worse when he had a huge puberty growth spurt. We sought a psychiatrist for the first time because of that increase. He very, very, very gradually had him increase guanfacine to 2mg a day. We also did some reading on pubmed and started him on a iron, magnesium, zinc supplement. About two months into this regimen the tics regressed and have been virtually absent for about 4 months. Fingers crossed! The guanfacine does not seem to help much with attention unfortunately. We still use a very low dose stimulant, but only on school days. It can still be a struggle. Have you checked out the Revibe watch? My son has liked it during remote learning to help his focus. He also uses a timer with prompting to complete a task and to take a break. The guanfacine is a first line treatment for tics and second line for adhd. We were also told about CBIT therapy. We were going to check into it, but so far so good. You can find a self run program for CBIT at tichelper.com.

My son hummed in his early years. He grew out of it. He did a lot of flapping as well. He's gotten much better with it. We went through years of nail biting. Then there was the nose picking. It seems like we circle through ticks every few years. Guanfacine helps, but doesn't get rid of them. Try to help her with behavioral therapy. Figuring out her triggers and helping her find ways to channel throu the tic. My son is 15 now and I still work with him every time I see a stim. I know the action most likely remain, so trying to give him tools to help. He does still take 2 mg of the Guanfacine.

Aaahh bless 🤗 My 12 year old has had tics since the age of 5, including the motor ones you listed & many more, he developed various vocal tics over the years too, mainly clearing throat, sniffing,grunting & shouting out or bouts of saying "Turtle" in an American accent?? 🤗..His changing hormones have definitely increased the vocal tics over the last few months (he will be 13 in Aug & in year 9 in Sept), maybe this is the case for your daughter too? (hormones hey bleughh!). The only thing I could do in regards to making him more comfortable at school,was to inform them of his changing tics, all his teachers are now aware & don't bring them to attention, so the children in his classes tend to ignore them too :). Although my son tends to supress alot of his tics at school, & let's loose in the playground or when he comes home, it makes me sad knowing he feels he has to do this. Hopefully with more acceptance from pupils & teachers he will become more comfortable with just being himself 😊 He also benefits from a 'timeout card' so if he feels he can't supress or having a particulary frequent bout, he shows his card & has a few mins out of the class to tic away. He also rocks on his chair,like allll the time at school,this is a particular concern as its dangerous,& his teachers do bring this to attention which causes the tics to frequent, we are still working on this,so any suggestions? would be very appreciated 😊

Thank you for posting 🌷

Thanks for the reply! Would the school let him use one of those chairs that has a ball for seat that he can bounce on? Maybe that would be helpful instead of tipping his chair.

Sorry to hear that. My son has a motor tic. It seems under control right now. He has adhd and the first adhd med concentra aggravated his tics and so we stopped giving him concentra because stimulants will aggravate tic disorder. Now he takes guanfacine and his tic disorder is now under control. He also takes sertraline and developmental services doctor said that sertraline helps reduce anxiety which can aggravate tics too so the sertraline helps control tics and reduce anxiety as well and it sure has worked a lot for him. I hope any of this helps.

My daughter and my grandsons all had tics but they were eliminated by medication. My daughter would constantly clear her throat, my older grandson would hum, younger would yell out random things. Hope you find something that works. Guanfacine added to other meds has been a blessing for the boys.

Have you tried a non stimulant medication? So she can get help with the adhd but not make the tics worse? Do you think she will be comfortable sharing with her classmates that she has tics? She might feel more at ease if the other kids understand why she’s doing it. I’m 38 and just now sharing with other people about my tics and I wish I had been doing it my whole life! because when you do, it’s not so weird to anyone else.

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