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Tourette's Syndrome

Tourette’s Syndrome is a known as a genetic disorder, which means it's the result of a change in genes that's either inherited (passed on from parent to child) or happens during development in the womb.


Tourette’s Syndrome is a condition which affects the nervous system and causes people to make sudden movements or sounds they can’t control, called tics. For example, someone with Tourette's might blink or clear their throat over and over again. Some people may blurt out words they don't intend to say.


Tourette’s Syndrome often starts in childhood and can begin as subtle as a nose twitch and progress to a head jerk depending on how the child is feeling at that time. The symptoms may also get better as the child grows, however, sometimes they can also seem to disappear only to reappear if the person becomes over excited or anxious.

Destroying the myth about Tourette’s Syndrome

Tourette’s Syndrome is often misunderstood as a condition which makes people swear, or say socially inappropriate things. Although it is true that ‘coprolalia’ – the clinical term for involuntary swearing – is a symptom of Tourette’s Syndrome, it only affects a minority of people. 90% of people with Tourette’s Syndrome  do not have coprolalia.


  • Knowledge - understanding tics, their nature and the challenges faced in living with them

  • Medication - this option is available for particularly severe tics that interfere and impair everyday functioning and cause pain and injury

  • Behavioural Therapy - these will help manage the tics and decrease their impact

  • Relaxation and breathing exercises

  • Physical exercise

Recommended Resources

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Tourettes Action

Tourette Syndrome (TS) is not a learning disability but some of the symptoms and co-occurring conditions can have a substantial impact on a child's ability to learn. It is important that children with TS are properly supported at school to help them reach their full potential.



The NHS website has useful information regarding tourettes.

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