Tics

HylianHylian Citizen, Mentor
Has anyone else dealt with tics before? If you have, were they vocal tics, motor tics, or both? Did they get worse with stress, and did they cause you stress?

I've dealt with tics to varying degrees throughout my life, and recently it's become one of the more debilitating comorbids to my ASD/OCD symptoms. Mine are mostly vocal right now, which can be really embarrassing since they are higher pitched noises + I've started uncontrollably saying certain curse words (I won't say which to keep this PG lol).

I have a doctor's appointment to talk with my PCP about going off the medication that I think has contributed to making them worse, and to ask to be referred to therapy.

I'm interested to hear about other people's experiences with tics and how they've been affected by them + cope with them. Currently I don't have many coping strategies besides for trying to avoid things that cause me anxiety. They're completely uncontrollable, so I can't just resist doing it like I can with my issues with compulsions.

Comments

  • AmityAmity Administrator, Citizen
    I have to admit Ive little to no experience with Tics Hylian, Im trying to understand, so I will ask for you patience with this... how does anxiety affect you, as in what other symptoms are exacerbated by anxiety and how do you cope with them?

  • HylianHylian Citizen, Mentor
    When I get anxiety/stressed out it makes my other OCD symptoms act up. I can sort of cope with them by trying to ignore my compulsions and by reminding myself that my obsessions are irrational, etc. Anxiety also often makes me dissociate heavily, but I don't know what to do for that because grounding techniques don't work on me. I usually just wait for it to pass.

    One of the issues with my tics is things online say you're supposed to be able to "ignore the urge" like compulsions, but I don't even get an "urge" before I just do them. There's no thought before they happen so there's nothing for me to ignore. I think after I go off of my ADHD medication I might need to go on some other type of medication for my tics if they don't let up, but I am worried it's going to just heighten other mental health issues like Strattera does.
  • HylianHylian Citizen, Mentor
    Here's a part of a Wikipedia page about tics that explains the characteristics of them, for anyone who doesn't really know what tics are/what they entail: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tic#Characteristics
  • I thought I knew what tics were, but after reading the article, it appears I don’t. I don’t understand how something can be 

    semi-voluntary or unvoluntary,[11] because they are not strictly involuntary—they may be experienced as a voluntary response to a premonitory urge (a sensory phenomena that is an inner sensation of mounting tension). A unique aspect of tics, relative to other movement disorders, is that they are suppressible yet irresistible;[12] they are experienced as an irresistible urge that must eventually be expressed.[11]

    I’m not sure how that differs from my irresistible urge to eat a chocolate chip cookie. I’m not being flip, I just don’t understand this definition.

    I have an involuntary twitching of an eyelid when I am really stressed. But according to the article that is not a tic.

    The little video examples look very much like some of my clients. But I didn’t think those were tics.

    I will have to study this more.

    it sounds awful, hylian, to have such an uncontrollable urge yet to be told you can control it. 


  • HylianHylian Citizen, Mentor
    After thinking more I've realized that I used to have the urge to tic when I was younger, but after they've gotten worse I don't think that I even have the time to think and try to suppress it before I just do it now. The urge might still be there, but I'm certainly not even getting the chance to notice it anymore. lol

    The feeling was also similar to the feeling my compulsions give me, where instead of just a normal "I want to do this" urge, I get actual, intense anxiety that continues to build if I don't do it. It also makes the body part that I want to tic with feel really weird, like if I have the urge to do this hard-blinking thing my eyes physically kind of hurt, or if I have the urge to vocal tic it makes my throat feel sort of like something is stuck in it. It gets worse if I don't do it and it's super odd.
  • HylianHylian Citizen, Mentor
    I found another persons description of what the urge to tic feels like to them:
    https://www.touretteshero.com/faq/

    Tics are chronic (long-term) repetitive and involuntary sounds and movements. It’s possible to suppress tics for a while, but eventually they have to be let out. I often tell children this is a bit like how it feels if you try not to blink...

    ...People with Tourettes describe what their tics feel like in different ways. For me, different tics have different sensations. Some feel like I’m being yanked from the inside, others are more like a pressure building up that needs to be released, like a sneeze. Both of these feel like they’re happening in a particular part of my body. The worst ones affect the whole of my body and feel like all of my insides are itching and can’t be scratched.
  • Teach51Teach51 Citizen
    edited August 2021


    Hylian said:
    I found another persons description of what the urge to tic feels like to them:
    https://www.touretteshero.com/faq/

    Tics are chronic (long-term) repetitive and involuntary sounds and movements. It’s possible to suppress tics for a while, but eventually they have to be let out. I often tell children this is a bit like how it feels if you try not to blink...

    ...People with Tourettes describe what their tics feel like in different ways. For me, different tics have different sensations. Some feel like I’m being yanked from the inside, others are more like a pressure building up that needs to be released, like a sneeze. Both of these feel like they’re happening in a particular part of my body. The worst ones affect the whole of my body and feel like all of my insides are itching and can’t be scratched.


     That sounds unbearable. Does anything ease it?

    So........there is a difference between a tic and a twitch? My son who has ADHD also has a twitch in his eye when he is stressed.
  • HylianHylian Citizen, Mentor
    Teach51 said:


    Hylian said:
    I found another persons description of what the urge to tic feels like to them:
    https://www.touretteshero.com/faq/

    Tics are chronic (long-term) repetitive and involuntary sounds and movements. It’s possible to suppress tics for a while, but eventually they have to be let out. I often tell children this is a bit like how it feels if you try not to blink...

    ...People with Tourettes describe what their tics feel like in different ways. For me, different tics have different sensations. Some feel like I’m being yanked from the inside, others are more like a pressure building up that needs to be released, like a sneeze. Both of these feel like they’re happening in a particular part of my body. The worst ones affect the whole of my body and feel like all of my insides are itching and can’t be scratched.


     That sounds unbearable. Does anything ease it?

    So........there is a difference between a tic and a twitch? My son who has ADHD also has a twitch in his eye when he is stressed.
    I've heard that things that take a lot of concentration ease them, and things like stress, tiredness, and boredom make them worse. The frequency and severity can also fluctuate without those factors. I've noticed that when I'm writing something online or playing a video game or something I don't tic that much, but if I'm bored or tired on top of being stressed it's almost like I can't stop doing it...

    I also think twitches are different. I think they're completely involuntary muscle movements. I've never heard of anyone saying they have the urge to twitch and I've heard that they often physically can't control it at all.
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