Could those Twitches Mean Tourette’s for Your Child?

  • Topic Info:Tourette syndrome is a neurological disorder branded by unusual repetitive, involuntary and unwanted movements or vocalizations known as tics. For instance, you may repeatedly blink your eyes, shrug your shoulders or jerk your head. In some cases, you might unintentionally blurt out offensive words.

    Tourette Syndrome is typically noticed in the early stages of childhood and has an average onset between ages three and nine.

    How do you know when to play attention to tics?

    Tics become worse when your child becomes excited, anxious, tired or bored and appear to be better during calm activities. If you begin to notice these unwanted patterns of behavior, a sniffle, a hand movement or throat clearing and it doesn't seem to go away, you should contact your pediatrician.

    There are several medication and dietary options in helping reduce symptoms of Tourette's, but they are not 100 percent curative.

    However, your child might not have Tourette's but instead may be suffering from a mild form of Tourette's known as Tic disorder, a temporary condition when your child makes one involuntary repetitive movement or noise.

    If your child is diagnosed with Tourette's, is this something they will live with for the rest of their life?

    Assistant professor at East Carolina University, Brody School of Medicine, Christine Tangredi, MD joins Melanie Cole, MS, to explain what Tourette syndrome is, the difference between tic disorder and Tourette's and what treatment options are available.
  • Host: Melanie Cole, MS