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Tourette syndrome in children

Tourette syndrome in children

Tourette syndrome is a medical condition that affects the central nervous system of children causing the appearance of nerve tics. The ticks are spasms or uncontrollable movements or involuntary sounds that the child can make. For a person to have Tourette Syndrome, he or she must have 2 tics that affect the body and one that is verbal.

All children with Tourette Syndrome have tics, but it is not mandatory for children who have tics to have the syndrome. The disease manifests more in boys than in girls and in most cases it disappears as the child grows.

What are the causes of the disease?

The causes of the syndrome are not fully known, but it is considered to be a genetically inherited condition.

Doctors and scientists also believe that it may be due to a communication problem in the brain. Neurotransmitters (chemicals in the brain that help to transmit nerve signals from one cell to another) could be blamed for this.

What are the symptoms of the syndrome?

The children suffering from Tourette have, as we have specified, motor and verbal tics. Both types can be simple (short, recurrent, abrupt, involving only a small number of muscles) and complex (involving several groups of muscles).

Motor tics

  • blinked;

  • touching another person's crutch;

  • eye movement;

  • lifting from the shoulders;

  • movement of the arms;

  • bending of the fingers;

  • removing the tongue;

  • sudden jerking of the head;

  • touching the nose;

  • jumping.

Verbal tics

  • Hiccupping;

  • shouts;

  • grohaituri;

  • imitation of various sounds;

  • repeating the words of another person.

The child suffering from Tourette will, in some situations, have more than one type of tick at the same time. Ticks can occur during the day, but they often disappear when the baby is focused on a certain activity or when in a relaxed state. Generally in children, Tourette's syndrome is manifested especially at the level of motor tics and less commonly we hear verbal tics. The symptoms appear in almost all cases in childhood, about 3 to 10 years.

The severity and types of tics change over time. Also their frequency is influenced by various situations the child goes through:

  • fatigue (exhaustion);

  • stress;

  • anxiety.

How does Tourette syndrome develop in children?

Most tics disappear as the baby grows. They start from childhood, from an early age, reach their peak at puberty, and then their frequency is reduced. The specialists claim that the most severe symptoms manifest themselves between 9 and 13 years. More than half of children return to their late teens and adulthood as a young adult.

Is there a cure for Tourette's syndrome?

Most children do not need treatment, the syndrome entering into remission by itself. But if the symptoms become more and more complex, it affects the quality of life of the little ones, then the doctor may recommend medicines that will improve them. However, there is no drug that can treat all the symptoms of the syndrome.

The disease is a neurological condition, not a psychological one. But sometimes the events in the child's life can cause emotions or they can put the child under severe stress that can aggravate the symptoms. Therefore, psychological counseling can be a good support for little ones.

How can you help the child?

Children suffering from this syndrome should be treated like any other child. You should not give her preferential treatment. They are capable of doing joint activities just like other children. It is important that young Tourette patients are socially integrated, not kept in isolation and given the same developmental opportunities as normal children. In fact, the specialists claim that most children with this syndrome get to play performance sports with remarkable results.

Tags Nervous tics children Psychic disorders children