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  • Writer's pictureFiona Murray

What Makes Us Tic?


Tourette Syndrome is an inherited neurological condition and can be one reason why people tic but did you know that it is very common for children to develop tics and then for them to go away again?

A tic is not considered indicative of Tourette Syndrome until it has been present for 12 months or more and that involuntary swearing or saying socially inappropriate things is a symptom rather than a criterion for diagnosis.

Tourette syndrome affects 1 school child in every hundred and is more common in boys but also affects girls and over 85% of people diagnosed will also have a co-occurring condition such as ADHD.

If you or your child are coping with the condition you may find that it comes along with some big feelings, such as sadness, anger, uncertainty and loneliness. However, there are sources of support so reach out to family and friends; to mental health professionals and charities such as Tourettes Action who can be found at


You can get help from specialists, from other families and get access to resources which can help your community, school and workplace support you as you live with the condition. Feeling less stressed about the condition can diminish the number and frequency of tics and research is helping us to understand the basis of the condition so you can be a partner in treatment and research. There is also an Online Support Group service run by Tourette’s Action so don’t feel alone !

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