Tourette syndrome is a condition that causes patients to perform certain repetitive movements or sounds involuntarily. Tourette syndrome is best known for tics, which usually start appearing when a child is 5 to 10 years old. At first, tics are simple and limited to a few muscles groups. Over time, other muscle groups may become affected, as the tics get worse. Although there is no definitive cure for Tourette syndrome, a combination of therapy and medication may help.


Echolalia - or the repetition of words spoken by others - is one of the most common symptoms associated with Tourette syndrome. This is often the initial symptom. People with it repeat words or phrases that others around them have said. This symptom is also related to other mental conditions and is not limited to Tourette's syndrome. It is important to receive a precise diagnosis to be able to proceed with treatment.

Tourette Syndrome



People with Tourette syndrome may experience symptoms that affect their speech and vocal cords. One of such symptoms is coprolalia. Coprolalia is a sudden outburst of inappropriate words, especially swear words. This can cause certain social situations to be difficult for the patient and others around them. Coprolalia affects around 10 to 15 percent of all Tourette symptom patients. To treat this symptom, patients should attend sessions to assess different treatment options.

Tourette syndrome types


Internal Tics

In rare cases, people have reported suffering from internal tics. These tics affect the internal organs, such as the lungs. However, there is little evidence to support these claims. The little research that exists on the topic is anecdotal at best, and patients report a wide variety of internal tics, making it difficult to establish a common list of symptoms. In most cases, the tics are involuntary, meaning that they are not performed by will.



Mouth Opening

Tics are basically a short and repetitive movement or sound made by a patient. In most cases, they appear on a random basis without an apparent reason. If a tic produces movement, it is a motor tic, whereas sound-producing tics are a vocal tic. If we examine motor tics, we can find a variety of different actions and movements. One of them is mouth opening: this occurs when the patient voluntarily or involuntarily opens their mouth on different occasions. Mouth opening is just one of many different motor tics.

tourette motor tics


Touching Objects

Tourette syndrome patients perform a series of repetitive actions like moving a certain body part. An example of a motor tic is the need to touch objects, whether it is an object close to you or any object in general. Tourette Syndrome patients report feeling a sudden urge to touch things. When the urge becomes overwhelming, the patient acts in an attempt to provide relief. Unfortunately, relief lasts only for a short period of time until the urge returns. These actions may be difficult to stop and may cause others to become irritated.

Tourette Syndrome functioning


Head Twist

There are numerous types of motor tics, which can be indicative of Tourette syndrome. One of the most common motor tics associated with this condition is a twisting of the head. Often, patients will describe a sudden urge to move their head in a certain direction. When the urge becomes powerful enough, they perform the action, creating a sense of relief.

head twist toutette


Complex Tics

Besides simple tics, those with Tourette syndrome may experience Complex tics. Simple tics are spontaneous, short-lasting and repetitive movements that affect limited muscles. Complex tics, however, involve more muscles groups, and can have an impact on a wider range of parts of the body. They can even extend to things such as the mouth or even internal organs. Some examples of complex tics include spinning around or jumping up and down.

complex tourette syndrome


Grunting Sounds

Among the most commonly reported vocal tics are grunting sounds. Sometimes, Tourette syndrome patients may unwillingly sound as if they were angry. A useful analogy that may help you understand a tic is having a hiccup. Despite not wanting to hiccup, your body does it regardless. Even though you may be able to resist the urge for a while, ultimately it will be impossible to avoid.

swallowing tourette


Repetitive Throat-clearing

Sometimes, these tics can affect the muscles of the throat and mouth. For example, some patients report sudden urges to clear their throat. This can occur repeatedly, making it an uncomfortable symptom to deal with. If symptoms become severe enough, your doctor may consider intensive treatment options. Besides throat clearing, you may notice other symptoms such as repetitive blinking.

throat clearing


Shoulder Jerking

When it comes to complex tics, one of the most common movements includes shoulder jerking. This movement involves a large group of muscles, and in some cases, may cause the patient to shake their shoulders. The amount of movement depends on each patient. Some people also report having certain triggers, such as a certain sound or feeling.



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