Supporting a Child with Tourette Syndrome

Children and Tourette Syndrome

Symptoms of Tourette Syndrome (tics) tend to emerge between the ages of 5-7 years and often increase in frequency and severity between the ages of 8-12 years. In addition to the medical and behavioral challenges that come hand-in-hand with TS, children also face challenging social and educational situations, which can be stressful.

Access Back-to-School Resources

TS in the Classroom

Standing up for yourself: Explaining Tourette at School

This section explains ways you can talk to your classmates and teachers about Tourette Syndrome, including a class activity.

Strategies & Techniques

Managing Tourette Syndrome or a Tic Disorder in the classroom requires knowledge and understanding. These are the key elements to creating an accepting and supportive educational environment.

Assistive Technology

What is Assistive Technology (AT)? Any item, piece of equipment, product system, whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional ece of equipment, capabilities of children with disabilities.”Sec. 300.5 Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

Assistive Technology (AT) can be any tool, device, or resource that helps people with disabilities access and participate in activities in their daily life.

Bullying Prevention & Strategies

Schools and communities have embraced new, effective strategies and implemented programs to prevent bullying. Educating students about Tourette can be an important first step to prevent bullying. If a child’s fellow classmates are not properly educated about TS, the potential for bullying can increase, and the child is more likely to develop poor social skills, under-achieve academically and suffer from low self-esteem. When students understand TS, they generally become more comfortable with their classmate and are less likely to bully or to condone the bullying

Parents Get Support for Your Child

Explaining TS

Tourette Syndrome (TS) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that becomes evident in early childhood or adolescence.

It is part of the spectrum of Tic Disorders and is characterized by motor and vocal tics. The current estimates are that 1 out of every 50 children has TS or another Tic Disorder.

Children's Toolkit

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Designed for children aged 7 to 12, this toolkit empowers them to articulate Tourette Syndrome to peers, friends, and family. It explains what TS is, its potential impact at school, and includes supportive content alongside enjoyable games.

Upcoming Workshops and Events

Kids Corner

Comic Book Series!

Conic Book Covers 3

Exploring Tourette Syndrome: Facing Challenges is a new series of comic books for children in different public situations. The first three comic books focus on exploring situations at home, in school, and at the mall.

Children’s Game!

Childrens Game One Sheeter cover

Download these fun games to learn about all things tic related.

Tourette is part of me, but it doesn't define me.

Become a Jr. Youth Ambassador

Inspired by our Youth Ambassador Program, the Junior Youth Ambassador Program trains children aged 7-11 with Tourette Syndrome or other Tic Disorders how to advocate for themselves in a world where TS is still highly misunderstood. The Jr. Youth Ambassador Program brings together and supports children and their parents as they learn about Tourette Syndrome and address specific topics such as self-advocacy, community service, and bullying.  

Get an 'I Have TS' ID Card

ts card

The stigma associated with Tourette Syndrome (TS) and Tic Disorders often arises from misconceptions. These informational cards clarify the effects of TS and are especially valuable in stressful situations like traveling or crowded areas.

Additional Resources

A Guide for Patients and Families (Toolkit)

This guide is meant to serve as a starting point for families who have just received a new diagnosis of Tourette Syndrome or other Tic Disorder. It will provide you with an overview, addressing several areas of living with these conditions. 

Emotional Overload: Understanding Non-Tic Related Behaviors (Toolkit)

While emotional overload can be a disruptive and sometimes difficult facet of living with TS or other Tic Disorder, this helpful toolkit outlines all you need to know as well as strategies to overcome these challenges. 

What is CBIT (Toolkit)

Download this helpful toolkit to learn more about Comprehensive Behavioral Intervention for Tics (CBIT) – the front line therapy that helps people living with Tourette Syndrome or other Tic Disorder to minimize the negative impacts of their tics and thrive.

What is Tourette Syndrome (Toolkit)

Tics are involuntary, repetitive movements and vocalizations. They are the defining feature of a group of childhood-onset, neurodevelopmental conditions known collectively as Tic Disorders and individually as Tourette Syndrome, Chronic Tic Disorder (Motor or Vocal Type), and Provisional Tic Disorder. The three Tic Disorders are distinguished by the types of tics present (motor, vocal/ phonic, or both) and by the length of time that the tics have been present. Individuals with Tourette Syndrome (TS) have had at least two motor tics and at least one vocal/phonic tic in some combination over the course of more than a year. By contrast, individuals with Chronic Tic Disorder have either motor tics or vocal tics that have been present for more than a year, and individuals with Provisional Tic Disorder have tics that have been present for less than a year.