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Tourette Syndrome Basics

Tourette’s Syndrome is an issue with the body’s nervous syndrome which causes people with the disease to make very sudden sounds or movements. These are called tics and are completely uncontrollable. There are treatments that can help control these tics but they may not be needed unless one’s Tourette’s Syndrome symptoms are very severe and bothersome. In the United States alone, about 100,000 people have a full condition of Tourette’s Syndrome but a lot of people also have mild cases that do not necessarily have to be treated.

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Tourette’s Syndrome usually starts in childhood and it is proven that more boys get the condition than girls do. Fortunately, most symptoms will either lessen or vanish completely as one gets older.

Symptoms
The biggest symptom of Tourette’s Syndrome is tics. These are sudden outbursts that one cannot physically control. Mild cases of Tourette’s Syndrome may involve tics that are not even noticeable while severe cases cause tics that are very obvious and happen frequently. There are factors that can make someone’s Tourette’s Syndrome act up more than normal including stress, sickness, excitement, and even being tired. Tourette’s Syndrome because a big issue when the tics are very strong and embarrassing. This can influence one’s work life and social life in a big way.

There are two different types of tics, motor tics which involve movement, and vocal tics which involve sound.

Motor Tics
Blinking rapidly
Head or arm jerking
Making an abnormal face
Shoulder shrugging
Mouth twitching

Vocal Tics
Clearing the throat
Yelping or barking
Grunting
Coughing
Repeating the words that someone else says
Sniffing
Shouting
Swearing

In mild cases of Tourette’s Syndrome, tics are usually involving the minor parts of the body including blinking eyes or making abnormal faces. More severe cases usually involve larger parts of the body and become more complicated including jumping and swearing.

ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) has also been associated with Tourette’s Syndrome. No one knows why the two go hand in hand but people with the condition have a difficult time paying attention, sitting still, and completing tasks. Other conditions that can be brought on by Tourette’s Syndrome are anxiety, learning disabilities, and OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder).

Treatment
As mentioned above, a lot of mild cases of Tourette’s Syndrome do not need to be treated but more severe cases can get a medication prescription to help control the tics. The only downside to this treatment is that it can take a while to find the right medication for the individual that does not cause any sort of side effects. A doctor should be consulted to receive the correct medication for the condition. Another treatment that can be used along with medication is talk therapy. A therapist can help the patient learn how to cope and deal with the tics so that they do not affect their work or social life. Behavior therapy is also a good idea to help notice the tic before it is coming which may allow the patient to slow it down or stop the tic from happening.

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