What causes Tourette’s – signs and symptoms to spot from a young age

Britain’s Tourette’s Mystery is set to air on Channel 4 at 10pm and will explore the impact the syndrome has on people’s lives.

It will also explore why more people are reportedly experiencing the symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome, as cases in the UK are on the rise.

Recently, Billie Eilish opened up about her excruciating experience with the syndrome.

It typically starts to show signs at a young age, so it is essential that parents understand the symptoms to look out for.

There is no cure for Tourette’s, but treatment can be used to help manage the condition.

The NHS has laid out all the signs of the condition that parents will want to know.

What causes Tourette’s syndrome?

Tourette’s syndrome affects over 300,000 people in the UK, according to tourettes-action.org.uk.

There is no known cause for Tourette’s, though it is believed to be a complex combination of inherited genetics and environmental factors.

As stated on mayoclinic.org: “Chemicals in the brain that transmit nerve impulses (neurotransmitters), including dopamine and serotonin, might play a role.”

On the NHS website, it makes clear that Tourette’s syndrome is a condition that causes a person to make involuntary sounds and movements called tics.

The severity of the syndrome can affect people differently, with some only showing it lightly while others find it makes everyday life debilitating.

What are the symptoms of Tourette’s?

Tourette’s syndrome appears in the form of tics that can be seen from a young age in those who have it.

The NHS lists the symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome, which take both physical and vocal forms.

Physical tics include:

Blinking
Eye rolling
Grimacing
Shoulder shrugging
Jerking of the head or limbs
Jumping
Twirling
Touching objects and other people

Vocal tics include:

Grunting
Throat clearing
Whistling
Coughing
Tongue clicking
Animal sounds
Saying random words and phrases
Repeating a sound, word or phrase swearing
People may associate symptoms of Tourette’s with sufferers enduring swearing outbursts, though this only affects one in 10 with the syndrome.

What ages does Tourette’s affect?
Tourette’s usually shows signs between the ages of two and 14.

Around six years old is the average age for people reporting the first symptoms., though there have been reports of children showing signs earlier or later in life.