Tourette syndrome is often thought to be a type of mental illness, but it is not. It is an inherited neuropsychiatric disorder with onset in childhood. Individuals suffering with Tourette syndrome feel an irresistible urge to make sounds and body movements, and these movements are beyond their control. These uncontrollable movements are called tics. Tourette is defined as a part of a spectrum of tic disorder which includes transient and chronic tics. For children suffering with Tourette’s syndrome, tics are very distressing, with they having no control over it. In few cases, patients might even blurt out obscenity in their behavior, although this is very rare. People suffering with this syndrome get relief only when their tics are expressed out. Tics increase with tension or any worries, and decrease with relaxation. So children suffering with this syndrome should always be kept calm and away from any kind of worry. Children suffering should be treated normally and should not be made fun of. You need to understand that the sudden actions or noises which they make are not under their control. These kids need extra care. The article will provide you with all possible information on the syndrome.
It is important to diagnose the syndrome correctly. The moment you notice any unusual expression or movement in your kid, pay a visit to your health care professional. Tics are the first sign of the syndrome, though all tics signs might not be tourette. Few kids develop tics for few weeks after which it disappears. A treatment plan for the syndrome can only start with accurate and thorough diagnosis. There are no specific tests conducted for diagnosing Tourette’s syndrome. Doctors just rely on the past history of the patient’s symptoms. There is nothing as the perfect or a typical case of Tourette syndrome. This condition follows a reliable course, in terms of the age of onset and history of severity of the symptoms.
The symptoms for Tourette syndrome are the tics which the patient develops.
These are a rapid, sudden and brief movement which involves a limited number of muscle groups. These include eye blinking, and other vision irregularities, facial grimacing, shoulder shrugging and head and shoulder jerking. Some vocal tics may include repetitive throat clearing, sniffing or grunting sounds.
These are distinct coordinated pattern of movement and involve several muscle groups. Complex motor tics might include facial grimacing with a head twist and a shoulder shrug. Other complex tics might appear purposeful, like sniffing or touching objects, hopping, jumping, bending or twisting. The vocal tics may include sniffing, throat clearing, grunting and snoring. There are few more complex vocal tics that might include words or phrases, like coprolalia or echolalia. These motor movements can also get dramatic and disabling and result in self-pain like punching oneself in the face. Some of the tics can also be preceded by an urge in the muscle group called the premonitory urge. People suffering from the syndrome will be relieved only after they complete a tic in a certain way or a certain number of times. Tics tend to increase with anxiety and reduce when the person is calm. Any physical experience can trigger a particular tic.
Causes Of Tourette Syndrome
Person suffering with the syndrome is most likely to pass it on to their children. Tourette is a condition of variable expression and incomplete penetrance, so not everyone who inherits genetic vulnerability will show symptoms. The genes may express a mild tic disorder or as obsessive compulsive symptoms without tics. Only a minority of children who inherit the infected genes show symptoms severe enough to require medical attention. Gender also plays a role; males are more likely to express tics than females.
Some infections and psychological factors may also cause the syndrome. In some cases autoimmune processes may affect tic onset and exacerbation. National Health of Mental Health in 1998 proposed a hypothesis that both obsessive compulsive disorder and tic disorder arise in children as a result of a post streptococcal autoimmune process. Children who meet five diagnostic criteria are classified according to the hypothesis as having pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorder associated with streptococcal infections.
There is no specific treatment for the syndrome, so more attention is paid on controlling tics and helping the person to adjust and live with the disorder. Individuals should go through a thorough evaluation. Counseling, learning coping techniques, medication and natural remedies are few treatment options for the syndrome. Depending on the need of the person, the treatment options can be mixed and combined. This will all lead to assisting the person to cope up with the disorder. Parents of the newly diagnosed children should be careful and investigate all possible treatment avenues for their children.