Tourette’s Disorder Basics
Tourette’s disorder cannot be cured, but it can be treated through a combination of behavioral therapy and medication.
Psychotherapeutic: While tics are involuntary, children can sometimes learn to suppress their tics through a kind of behavioral therapy called “habit reversal.” Habit reversal teaches children to recognize their individual tics and perform actions that are incompatible with them each time the tic impulse is anticipated. Other psychotherapies, including cognitive behavioral therapy, can help children learn to cope with their Tourette’s syndrome as well as any co-existing disorders. In addition, peers and teachers can be educated about the condition so that they can provide caring support for a young person with the disorder.
Pharmacological: There are a variety of medications commonly prescribed to help control the symptoms of Tourette’s disorder, and an experienced professional should closely monitor any course. A doctor may prescribe neuroleptic medications, which appear to help control tics by blocking the brain’s dopamine neurotransmitters.