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Explosion of tics

(12 Posts)
Sunflowersrock Wed 22-Jun-16 10:13:27

I really need some advice about my little boy who's just turned 5. He started throat clearing about 9 months ago and after various trips to the docs they put him on inhalers thinking it was asthma related (he does not have asthma). He would clear his throat pretty much every 2 seconds at its worst but never at night. This lasted about 4-6 weeks and stopped. It returned again 2 months later and GP suggested it was a habit. Again lasted about 6 weeks to be replaced by a rather annoying (as if the throat thing wasn't annoying!) lip sucking/smacking noise.
Then on Sunday, after a hectic weekend of kids parties (which he didn't enjoy as he's not a great fan of noises environments) he started a rather alarming neck/shoulder/eye combo of movements with a vocal sound attached for good measure. It's worse when he's tired but very obvious even when he's well rested. Worse watching TV or eating.
I'm petrified this is Tourette's syndrome and seeing GP this evening (armed with videos galore so I hope he isn't in a rush).
My little boy is always on the go and I mean always. Even at bedtime and during the story he is constantly moving/fidgeting. It's almost like he's been plugged in and can't unplug himself. He's doing really well at school, has lots of friends but is lacking in confidence. I'm so worried about him right now. Can anyone relate to this or share any stories about tics? I guess I'm looking for reassurance but know there is likely to be a lot of uncertainty about how this will unfold. sad
Thanks you

VioletBam Wed 22-Jun-16 14:13:29

For Tourettes to be diagnosed, there needs to be two or more MOTOR tics plus at least on VOCAL tic.

So really, DS would need to be displaying all of the tics you've mentioned at once...or regularly rather.

He has moved on through various tics and isn't doing all of them.

I had a tic as a went when I got to about 7...started at about 6. It was a vocal tic. I know you're going to worry...of course you are...but they're quite common really and usually go away.x

MidnightVelvetthe5th Wed 22-Jun-16 14:22:51

Yep my DS1 has had tics since he was about 4, he's nearly 11 now & they come & go.

He has vocal ones including throat clearing & coughing & just a weird hmmmargh noise. They generally last about a month or so.

Then they are replaced by movement ones such as face pulling, neck stretching, mouth opening really wide. Then they go away after a few weeks.

Its very odd & I took my DS to the doctors when he was about 5 & the doc just said they were common & they would go away.

Like your experience they are worse when watching TV or concentrating & he does them in the classroom as he has said that his classmates have started to imitate him. They are absent now & have been for months but they can return at any time.

Other things are that he has always been an early riser, always up before 6am no matter what time he goes to bed. He has issues with clothes, he can't bear scratchiness & I have to cut the labels out of everything & I buy him the Skinkind school polo shirts from M&S. He does OK at social skills but he seems to float alongside friendship groups & doesn't really have any firm friends.

I love him dearly but he's just a bit left of centre, he's also G&T at school & has the most amazing imagination & can produce startling work.

I've wondered at times if he is on the spectrum but its never been mentioned by school & he's starting secondary this year so I'm assuming not

WWYD2016 Wed 22-Jun-16 14:55:14

How interesting. DS2 will be 11 this year. When he was 6 on a family holiday he wet the bed every night for 6 nights which was most unusual, the bed wetting stopped when we returned home but was replaced by constant, not the least bit subtle head shaking. He was referred to a paediatrician who deemed it conscious and not subconscious at all, I cannot remember how nor why, sorry OP. Anyway, the paediatrician must have been spot on because his tics have changed many times over the last 5 years, neck stretching, gurning, eye rolling, looking up out of the corners of his eyes, stretching his eye lids with his fingers, jerking shoulders, looking over his shoulders. He is back to head shaking again but for the last six months he's been throat clearing (think Citizen Khan), the doc diagnosed a virus 3 months ago but now I know it is not, it's definitely a habit/tic and it’s most annoying but I have to ignore it, it’ll soon disappear to be replaced with something else. FWIW he is academically bright, the most amazing sportsman, very sociable and popular at school but strangely lacks confidence, needs constant reassurance and does not handle stress well at all, school projects are meltdown inducing and he’s seeing the school councillor weekly for stress management, however, he is very loving and tactile. We’re all different eh.

Sunflowersrock Wed 22-Jun-16 17:18:37

Thanks so much for all your replies. I spoke with my GP who was lovely and showed him the videos. Due to the length of time this has been going on he's referring us to a Paediatrician. DS is also a bit left of centre! Fidgets all the time, loves larking about but is very bright at school. He hates loud noises and busy places (very like me) and would much rather be outside than inside the classroom. He still won't let me leave him at parties and can be very lacking in confidence but he's the most loving and caring wee boy, shows great empathy and is much more confident in smaller groups.
You've all reassured me and this evening his motor tic isn't quite as obvious but he's making weird throat noises whilst playing on the iPad as I type this!

Sunflowersrock Wed 22-Jun-16 17:21:30

VioletBam, at the moment he has a combo of motor and vocal...all at same time. Prior to this kicking off it was one tic (throat clearing or lip licking or lip sucking) at a time. They were all there at the beginning of the week but defo a little less this evening smile

Greenyogagirl Wed 22-Jun-16 17:23:22

Sounds very similar to my son, hates loud noises, busy places and Has tics/stims. He has a diagnosis of autism xx

longdiling Wed 22-Jun-16 17:48:22

I have a ds who is 9 now and has had a series of tics from when he was around 4. We've had rapid blinking, throat clearing, 'excuse me', I also went to the teacher to speak about it when it became more dramatic at around the age of 6 - a sort of big shrug and head shake combo. She didn't think it was anything to be concerned about. We're now onto a subtle shake of the head as if he's shaking his fringe out of his eyes - despite it being nowhere near his eyes! He is also very funny about clothes.

I'll be interested to see what a paediatrician would make of it! I feel a bit bad that I never thought of taking ds to the gp. It doesn't seem to bother him at all.

Sunflowersrock Wed 22-Jun-16 18:18:13

I only took him because the tics were so dramatic Sunday/Monday. At one point I thought he was going to have a seizure. Its all a bit calmer in the tic front this evening . His half brother also had a few quirks at school and always had to have something in his hand to play with and DH last night that he used to hum....all the time and drove his mum crazy with it 😆. I don't think DS is autistic but certainly shares some common ground with my best friends autistic boy. Will wait to see how long we have to wait for assessment x

babypup Wed 29-Jun-16 21:30:48

My son is 7 and has had tics since he was 4. Mainly excessive eye blinking, it comes and goes. We rarely get longer than. 5 month break before Nother episode which can last days to months before another pause. I have learned to live with it, knowing it will go away again. I empathise with the fear of what it means long-term, wanting a crystal ball. It can be tough to watch. He does well in school, has loads of friends and is a keen sportsman. At Xmas he did have an explosion of OCD behaviour which was really scary, after a few counselling sessions it calmed down but remains part of his fabric. He too is a stressy wee boy, likes to know what's coming next, dislikes change....but then bizarelly will join new clubs, has lots of mates. He's a bit of an oddball but then so am I. I worry about him, but now that 3 full years of tics coming and going have passed, I can see it hasn't held him back in any way. Try not to let yourself get too stressed out, they sense it, I think my anxieties can make his tics last longer at times xx

Coley8 Sun 24-Jul-16 13:58:31

My almost 4 year old little boy started a tic around a year a go. It is like the gasp for air sound when you cry similar to a hiccup I suppose. He started it at a stressful time, potty training, moving up to preschool in nursery & we had just returned from a holiday and went on another both in the UK. As you can imagine I worried sick with it and tried everything I could do make them go away. I have never mentioned it to him and don't show any acknowledgement of them either. He started the tic in August 2015 and since Feb 2016 it was much improved and hardly did it at all. We had him on the Feingold Diet and started to reintroduce things around May/June with no obvious reactions. We went abroad in July and he didn't tic once the whole holiday. When we returned however it came back with a vengance and is worse than ever. Whilst we were abroad he had a sore throat which made me remember that just before the tic started for the first time ever he had also suffered with a sore throat. I wondered if anyone else can relate to this as there is a condition called PANDAS that I have looked into which seems like a possibility?

Tippytoes13 Mon 25-Jul-16 21:20:55

My 10 year old son has had tics since he was 2. He generally gets vocal ones, he mutters all sorts of words, makes lots of different sounds. It isn't really noticeable when he's playing outside, but at home and when he's playing on the computer with his friends, it's very obvious. He also has OCD, certain things need to be in order, his bed cover can't have any creases etc. He's seen a paediatrician, who has ruled out a medical cause and said to just ignore it. It gets worse during tiredness, stressful and anxious periods. We have all got used to it now and it's just a part of him now, I know it's always vey worrying though and you always worry about how other night react to it.

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