Tourette’s: What Is It?

Tourette’s disorder is a neurological condition characterized by involuntary movements and sounds called “tics.”  Tics are sudden, rapid, recurrent, nonrhythmic movements or vocalizations. Different children have different tics, such as blinking, twitching, barking, throat clearing, coughing, or repeating certain words.  Some people with the disorder experience outbursts of profanity, although this particular tic is actually quite rare. To be diagnosed with Tourette’s a child must have both motor and vocal tics which have persisted—though they may wax and wane—for at least a year.