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Tourette Syndrome In Children


TS is a disorder that causes your child to have tics. A tic is when your child makes sudden, fast movements or sounds that he cannot control. TS begins before 18 years of age, usually between 7 and 12 years.


Call 911 for any of the following:

  • Your child tells you he feels like hurting himself or others.
  • Your child has hurt himself or someone else.

Seek care immediately if:

  • Your child gets very upset, threatens someone, or is violent. This may include talking loudly, shouting, or becoming very demanding.
  • Your child has a high fever, muscle stiffness, and problems thinking.
  • Your child has new changes in his vision.

Contact your child's healthcare provider if:

  • Your child is not sleeping well or sleeps more than usual.
  • Your child has trouble in school or becomes depressed or anxious
  • Your child is having muscle spasms (twitching) or trouble walking.
  • Your child has new tics, or his tics are getting worse or preventing him from doing his normal activities.
  • You have questions or concerns about your child's condition or care.


  • Medicines may be given to help decrease your child's tics. Some of the medicines may also help control anxiety, mood swings, or aggressive behavior. Some medicines may also help your child sleep.
  • Give your child's medicine as directed. Call your child's healthcare provider if you think the medicine is not working as expected. Tell him if your child is allergic to any medicine. Keep a current list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs your child takes. Include the amounts, and when, how, and why they are taken. Bring the list or the medicines in their containers to follow-up visits. Carry your child's medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Follow up with your child's healthcare provider as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Help your child manage TS:

The following can help your child manage his symptoms and decrease stress:

  • Biofeedback training helps your child to control how his body reacts to stress or pain. This training can help reduce tics by helping your child manage triggers that can lead to a tic.
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) helps your child learn to control his behavior, thoughts, and emotions. CBT may help your child understand the tic disorder and help him cope with his symptoms.
  • Habit reversal therapy helps your child learn new behaviors to take the place of his tics. Your child learns to recognize when the urge to have a tic is building. He learns to choose an action he can do that will interrupt the tic. He may need to do the action for up to 3 minutes before the tic urge stops.
  • Relaxation therapy helps decrease your child's physical and emotional stress. Relaxation therapy may help your child learn to control his tics. Deep breathing, muscle relaxation, meditation, and listening to music can help your child cope with stressful events.

For more information:

  • Tourette Syndrome Association
    42-40 Bell Boulevard
    Bayside , NY 11361-2820
    Phone: 1- 718 - 224-2999
    Web Address:

© 2016 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.