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Tourettes Action
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Motor tic advice

Hi all my son is 10 nearly 11 and last year started having motor tics. It’s mainly in his neck and his whole head tics to the side which can be quite painful for him. We saw a doctor last year who thought he will probably grow out of them, but if anything they are getting worse. I know some of the triggers for him are being anxious or stressed as well as being excited. Anyway tonight he has been to a school disco, I wasn’t there but he’s informed me that the lights made him tic even more or in his words “ I was ticin like crazy”. Although offered medication from the doctor when we saw her we declined thinking this will be something that will go away.... anyhoo I was just looking for a bit of advice, should I take him back to the doctor with this new thing (flashing lights)? Is this normal for tics? What does the medication actually do and does it have side effects? Sorry for the long post tia x

2 Replies

Hi Diane. Thanks for getting in touch via this forum. I would say the first thing to be aware of is that for Tourette Syndrome (TS) to be diagnosed a person must have both vocal and motor tics for at least 12 months. There are a variety of other tic disorders and conditions which share similar symptoms to TS. And if your son is being affected by bright flashing lights I would advise that you consult with your GP. Many people with TS have a sensory element to their condition which can make them very sensitive to stimuli such as loud noise, busy crowds, certain textures etc. However its not fundamental to the condition. There are different types of medication that people can be offered to manage Tourette Syndrome tics - but these are only prescribed after careful consultation and will be administered by a secondary care practitioner such as a neurologist, psychiatrist or paediatrician. There are also non-drug approaches to managing tics, such as behavioural therapy. You can read more about 'managing TS' on the Tourettes Action website: tourettes-action.org.uk/69-...

I would say at this stage, without an official diagnosis it is advisable to go back to your GP with information of any new developments in your son's symptoms. You can read more about symptoms of TS on the Tourettes Action website to see if they correspond with your son. Tourettes Action also have a list of consultants who diagnose and treat TS, and a list of therapists who provide behavioural therapy for managing tics. You can have both lists emailed to you by contacting the helpdesk: help@tourettes-action.org.uk or call 0300 777 8427

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Wishing you all the best . I think go back to the gp but from my understanding they will Medicate if you feel like it’s impacting him.

It also seems that the side effects of medication is quite bad but I think you should get referral to nuero if it’s getting worse

I am new to all this myself and I know how you feel. All the best and some hugs


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