Do I have tourettes?

Hey

I just wanted to know If I possibly have tourettes. For years I have had 'tics' but not sure what they were and what caused them. I'm not sure when they started but I can remember when I was around 12/13 they may have possibly started. I used to all the time make hiccup sounds that just never seemed to stop, and the more nervous I got about some situations, the worse they got. They developed into full body like twitches that used to actually scare my college tutor. Currently I sometimes get head twitches and make (of which makes me a little self concious) screaming like noises. When in a relaxed situation or when busy I am OK and very rarely happen but just before I started writing this, I for 15/20 minutes seem to kinda let loose and Its annoyed me and upset me.

When i'm nervous, tired or stressed its bad. When I'm excited is when its at its worst.

It hinders me sometimes and embarrasses me when at Uni or work because people just look at me like I'm crazy. I have learnt to sometimes suppress them but then when I do that, they all come at once. This was horrible when I spent a few weeks in the summer just gone working as a Door to Door rep. I tried not to do it in front of potential customers but as soon as the door closed they started.

I just don't know what to do because I cant help it, sometimes it happens other times I feel if I don't do something this feeling build up until I make a noise or twitch to suppress it. My house mates get annoyed with me and are constantly telling me to be quiet but I really cant help it. I'm at the point where It happens and I say Sorry straight away every time. I'm now 21 (in a month) and just want it sorted.

What do I do? Please help!

Nat

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6 Replies

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  • Hello

    You need to see your doctor to check this out. A lot of what you describe is what our son experiences (he is 18).

    You also need help and support from those around you (family in particular and possibly friends).

    Good luck.

  • Dear Nat

    Thanks so much for getting in touch. Sorry to hear you have been having a difficult time recently. I am the research manager at Tourettes Action and I would strongly suggest you look at our website as there is so much information on there.

    You mention your tics which you say you’ve had for years and your right that one of the key features of Tourette Syndrome (TS) are tics; both repeated movements and sounds that are chronic (long-term) and involuntary.

    You mentioned that you think they may have started around 12/13 years and this sounds similar to TS. Each person with TS will have different symptoms. Some people may have a mild form, and they and those close to them may not even be aware that they have TS. Only 10% of people with TS have any swearing (coprolalia).

    I think it would be a great idea if we can send you some of our leaflets about TS and tics – then you can share these with people you think would find it useful, like your college tutor. If you can call the helpline we can send you a range of leaflets, but you can find them on the website tourettes-action.org.uk/19-...

    If you call the helpdesk they can send you leaflets and also send you information about how to go about seeing a specialist who might give a diagnosis Helpdesk 0300 777 8427

    tourettes-action.org.uk/20-.... The helpdesk can also send you leaflets about being diagnosed and we have a list of specialists that you can request and then ask your GP to refer you. Your GP is also welcome to contact us – or you can take some of the leaflets with you if you go?

    For people that do have a diagnosis some find an ID card helpful – which they can show people to explain why they are moving and making noises tourettes-action.org.uk/12-...

    Tourettes Action is here to help so please do email of call the helpdesk and look at our website, you can contact us whenever you need

    Very best wishes

    Seonaid

  • Hello!

    My son is 22 years old and I think I just realized he may have a mild form of TS. He started having tics when he was about 5 or 6; at least that is around the time we noticed. He would be playing video game and every few seconds he would this combination of touching his forehead, arms and legs. Then he started licking people, and we just thought it was a phase. For about a year he kept sticking his tongue out all the time. Later he started doing these little jumps and little squicking noise. He never had any issues with other kids at school, never got bullied or anything like that. His pediatrician didnt seem worried about it. He never brought up TS. Today at 22, he blinks his eyes a lot, and does the throat clearing. Once in a while I've noticed that he does a little squick, LOL. I guess that even if he does have a mild form of TS, Im thankful that it never got in the way of him living a happy life. He just finished Basic training for the national guard and he had not issues at all. What I do wonder about now is: Will his kids, if he has any someday, inherit it?

    Thanks for reading this!

    Paula

  • This is something I often wonder. My dad will sit there and repeat a phrase with a head trust many times. Im not sure if it does stem from something or not with parent to child

  • Hi Paula

    why not call the Helpdesk 0300 777 8427? We can send you leaflets and also lists of specialists if you do decide to investigate his tics. You can find one of our leaflets tourettes-action.org.uk/sto...

    Tourette Syndrome (TS) is a complex, neurological condition and it is not yet known what causes it. The condition is hereditary and a person with TS has, roughly, a 50 per cent chance of passing on the gene to their children.

    This doesn’t mean, though, that the child will inherit an identical form of TS. Their condition may be milder or more severe than their parents' and they may display different types of tics. So far no single gene has been convincingly identified, and exactly how TS is inherited is not clear.

    I hope this helps

    best wishes

    Seonaid Anderson (research manager)

  • Hi honey, I'm not a specialist or anything but I have worked with a few ppl.that had Torettes & my grandson has it also.

    He has multiple tics which sometimes come out all at once and some in there own. He blinks one eye then the other, winking or shut both eyes but quicker than normal blinking. Frowns makes lots of exaggerated movements with his face. Licks lips, coughing, clearing throat, making noisier with throat, nasal grunting almost.

    Exaggerated swallowing. Tenses his shoulders & moves his head down.

    He mimicks what you say to him a lot. He has hyperactivity and can not keep still for a minute. He moves his hands in a certain way like a wave when he touches things. He does have funny little rituals and OCD & HDHD definitely comes along with his Torettes.

    He also has hypermobility & all his body is double jointed & he has to keep moving his fingers in a certain way which is a bit worrying because he likes to make them crack.

    Don't know if makes any difference but he is also left handed.

    He can be very noisy shouting, screeching & sings loudly & is very emotional sometimes.

    Like you say it comes and goes and its always worse when he is stressed or worried about anything.

    He is now 6 so it's been hard going because we would never know if it was the Torettes or him being naughty but he can now tell us, that its the Torettes.

    There's no specific test that can diagnose Tourette syndrome. The diagnosis is based on the history of your signs and symptoms.

    The criteria used to diagnose Tourette syndrome include:

    Both motor tics and vocal tics are present, although not necessarily at the same time

    Tics occur several times a day, nearly every day or intermittently, for more than a year

    Tics begin before age 18

    Tics aren't caused by medications, other substances or another medical condition

    A diagnosis of Tourette syndrome might be overlooked because the signs can mimic other conditions. Eye blinking might be initially associated with vision problems, or sniffling attributed to allergies.

    Both motor and vocal tics can be caused by conditions other than Tourette syndrome.

    There's no specific test that can diagnose Tourette syndrome. The diagnosis is based on the history of your signs and symptoms.

    The criteria used to diagnose Tourette syndrome include:

    Both motor tics and vocal tics are present, although not necessarily at the same time

    Tics occur several times a day, nearly every day or intermittently, for more than a year

    Tics begin before age 18

    Tics aren't caused by medications, other substances or another medical condition

    A diagnosis of Tourette syndrome might be overlooked because the signs can mimic other conditions. Eye blinking might be initially associated with vision problems, or sniffling attributed to allergies.

    Both motor and vocal tics can be caused by conditions other than Tourette syndrome.

    Hope this helps you and you really need to go see GP and get a specialist to diagose it because like the info says, it can be caused by other things.

    Luv Jan xx

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