Treatment for Tourette’s syndrome
Treatment for Tourette’s syndrome in western medicine is palliative and aims to decrease the severity of the symptoms. Although there is no cure for TS, there are Tourette’s syndrome treatments available to help manage the tics. Many people with TS have tics that do not get in the way of their daily life and, therefore, do not need any treatment for Tourette’s syndrome. However, medications for Tourette syndrome and Therapy like behavioral treatments are available if tics cause pain or injury; interfere with school, work, or social life; or cause stress.
Below are treatments for Tourette’s syndrome
Medications for Tourette syndrome:
The use of medications for Tourette syndrome is one of Tourette syndrome treatments that can help ease the symptoms of Tourette syndrome. Listed below are the most commonly used medications for Tourette’s syndrome:
- Haloperidol (Haldol), fluphenazine (Prolixin), and pimozide (Orap), which work on a brain chemical called dopamine to control tics.
- Clonidine (Catapres) and guanfacine (Tenex, Intuniv)), high blood pressure drugs that can also treat tics.
- Fluoxetine (Prozac), paroxetine (Paxil), sertraline (Zoloft), and other antidepressants, which can relieve anxiety, sadness, and obsessive-compulsive symptoms.
Therapy treatment for tics
Therapy for tics is another form of treatment for Tourette’s syndrome that also helps ease the symptoms of TS. Below are listed some different approaches to therapy for tics:
- Along with medicine, you may consider talk therapy for Tourette’s syndrome. A psychologist or counselor can help you learn how to deal with the social issues your tics and other symptoms may cause.
- Behavior therapy for tics may also help. A specific kind, called habit-reversal training, teaches you how to recognize that a tic is coming and then move in a way that stops it.
Apart from medications and therapy for Tourette’s syndrome, there are other types of treatments for Tourette’s syndrome, and one of them is a natural treatment for Tourette’s syndrome which will be discussed in this article.
What is Tourette’s syndrome?
About 100,000 Americans have full-blown Tourette’s syndrome, which manifests in tics, but more people have a milder form of the disease. It often starts in childhood, and more boys than girls get it. Symptoms often get better as children grow up. For some people, they go away completely.
Tourette Syndrome (TS) is a serious medical condition of the nervous system. TS causes people to have “tics”.
Tics are sudden twitches, movements, or sounds that people do repeatedly. People who have tics cannot stop their bodies from doing these things. For example, a person might keep blinking over and over. Or, a person might make a grunting sound unwillingly.
Having tics is a little bit like having hiccups. Even though you might not want to hiccup, your body does it anyway. Sometimes people can stop themselves from doing a certain tic for a while, but it’s hard. Eventually, the person will make it again.
What causes Tourette’s syndrome and what causes tics?
The causes of Tourette’s syndrome have been linked to different parts of the brain, including an area called the basal ganglia, which helps control body movements. Differences there may affect nerve cells and the chemicals that carry messages between them. Researchers think the trouble in this brain network may play a role in Tourette’s.
Doctors don’t know the exact Tourette syndrome causes, but genes probably play a role. It’s likely that there is more than one cause.
People who have family members with Tourette disease are more likely to get it themselves. But people in the same family may have different symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome and different types of tics.
Risk factors for Tourette syndrome include:
- Family history. Having a family history of Tourette syndrome or other tic disorders might increase the risk of developing Tourette syndrome.
- Males are about three to four times more likely than females to develop Tourette syndrome.
Types of Tics
There are a few different types of tics:
Motor tics are movements of the body. Examples of motor tics include blinking, shrugging the shoulders, or jerking an arm.
Vocal tics are sounds that a person makes with his or her voice. Examples of vocal tics include humming, clearing the throat, or yelling out a word or phrase.
Simple tics involve just a few parts of the body. Examples of simple tics include squinting the eyes or sniffing. Simple tics have a shorter duration and can last for milliseconds.
Examples of simple motor tics include:
- Blinking eye
- Lightning eye
- jerking his head
- Contraction of the lips
- Facial grimaces
- Shrugging shoulders
- jerking his neck
Examples of simple vocal tics:
- Clear your throat
- to spit
Complex tics usually involve several different parts of the body and can have a pattern. Complex tics usually last longer, generally longer than a second. These can be a combination of two or more simple tics.
Examples of complex motor tics are:
- Touch your nose
- Touch people
- Shaking his head
- Echopraxia (involuntary repetition of another person’s act)
Examples of complex vocal tics are:
- Involuntary swearing
- Palilalia (repetition of own words/sentences
- Echolalia (repeat other sentences)
- Speak obscene words or phrases
Symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome
The main Tourette syndrome symptoms are tics. Symptoms of Tourette syndrome usually begin when a child is 5 to 10 years of age. The first symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome often are motor tics that occur in the head and neck area. Tics usually are worse during times that are stressful or exciting. They tend to improve when a person is calm or focused on an activity.
The types of tics and how often a person has tics changes a lot over time. Even though the symptoms might appear, disappear, and reappear, these conditions are considered chronic.
In most cases, tics decrease during adolescence and early adulthood and sometimes disappear entirely. However, many people with TS experience tics into adulthood, and, in some cases, tics can become worse during adulthood.
Although the media often portray people with TS as involuntarily shouting out swear words (called coprolalia) or constantly repeating the words of other people (called echolalia), these Tourette syndrome symptoms are rare and are not required for a diagnosis of TS.
Other symptoms of Tourette syndrome include the following:
- Arm or head jerking
- Making a face
- Mouth twitching
- Shoulder shrugging
- Barking or yelping
- Clearing your throat
- Repeating what someone else says
Natural treatment for Tourette syndrome
Natural treatments for Tourette syndrome are used to treat Tourette syndrome holistically without developing any side effects. Below are different methods used for the natural treatment for Tourette’s syndrome:
Whole Body Relaxation – an important addition to any treatment for Tourette’s syndrome.
A study published in the Journal of Affective Disorders found that body-mind relaxation meditations can help modulate brain activity in multiple areas where emotion processing is found.
To induce a whole-body relaxation response, guide your child through tensing and releasing various muscle groups. Starting at the feet, and moving upwards, squeeze muscles hard to the count of 5, and then release to the count of 15. Then, go to the next muscle group, and repeat until you reach the top of the head. Some individuals with Tourette’s may find that tensing and releasing the lower body is enough. However, others may find the same to be true with the upper body.
Exercises as an additional component of the treatment for Tourette’s syndrome help to decrease the energy level.
Aerobic exercises have been shown to significantly reduce tics during exercise and post-exercise. The study published in Behavior Modification Journal found that in addition to tic reduction, aerobic exercise also had a beneficial impact on anxiety and mood levels. (26)
While the study did not identify the intensity or length of time for the exercise sessions observed, incorporate regular aerobic activity daily for best results. Try to find ways to make exercise fun. Dance, tennis, basketball, playing tag can all get the heart pumping, resulting in healthier and happier kids.
Acupuncture – an ancient Chinese treatment for Tourette’s syndrome
In a small study, Chinese researchers found acupuncture for Tourette syndrome to have an effective rate of 97.1% in the treatment of Tourette’s syndrome. Their conclusion was that acupuncture treatment for Tourette’s syndrome is a “very effective therapy for TS.” While parents and children alike may hesitate to try acupuncture, it is a safe procedure that is proven to help with insomnia, pain, stress, and now Tourette’s.
Miss Arizona 2013, Jennifer Smestad, a Tourette’s sufferer, used acupuncture for Tourette syndrome to control symptoms including both physical and verbal tics. Her story published in Acupuncture Today is a must-read for the parents of Tourette patients.
Herbs that help with treatment for Tourette syndrome
The list of herbs commonly used for the treatment of Tourette syndrome includes
- For over 5,000 years, chamomile has been used for insomnia, wounds, allergies, arthritis, to fight anxiety and depression, and for muscle spasms. As a matter of fact, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial found that chamomile reduced anxiety in patients with mild to moderate generalized anxiety disorder. Luckily, organic chamomile teas, tinctures, and essential oils are readily available at health food stores, which makes it easy to incorporate them into your daily routine. To help relieve tension and promote sleep, try diffusing chamomile essential oil. You can also enjoy a cup of tea (or iced tea) any time of the day to gain the benefits from this powerful flower.
- In a double-blind, randomized controlled trial that pitted Passiflora extract vs. Oxazepam, researchers found that Passiflora extract is effective for the management of anxiety, and has a low incidence of impairment of performance when compared to oxazepam. Individuals with Tourette’s syndrome often have trouble sleeping, anxiety, and depression, and often have co-occurring ADHD. Passion Flower is known to help with these conditions. There are teas and supplements available; follow recommended dosing for best results.
Herbs like hops, skullcap, wood betony, or valerian, which are free of side effects, provide vitamins and minerals, and relax muscles and nerves. The herbs can be taken as teas by adding 1 teaspoon of the herb to a cup of boiling water and steeping in a covered glass or ceramic pot or mug for 15 minutes. Your grandson can take one-half cup, three times daily.
Other herbs that help with Tourette syndrome are:
- Shallaki (Boswellia serrata),
- Guggulu (Commiphora mukul),
- Rasna (Pluchea lanceolata),
- Tagar (Valeriana wallichii),
- Deodar (Cedrus deodara),
- Erandmool (Ricinus communis),
- Chitrak (Plumbago zeylanica),
- Vishwa (Zingiber officinalis),
- Shalparni (Desmodium gangeticum),
- Prushnaparni (Uraria picta),
- Agnimanth (Premna mucronata) and
- Shyonak (Oroxylum Indicum).
Hypnosis treatment for Tourette’s syndrome
In a 2010 study published in the Journal of Developmental; and Behavioral Pediatrics, 33 children with Tourette’s syndrome underwent TS hypnosis treatment over a number of sessions to help them to reduce the severity of tics and other symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome.
The children were shown how to relax deeply and access an inner place of calm, and then, while totally relaxed, to hypnotically experience that energy that builds up before a tic and redirect it in some other way. After several sessions of TS hypnosis treatment, almost all of the children had significantly improved tic control.
But these principles don’t just apply to children. Anyone with Tourette’s can harness the power of mental imagery to reduce their symptoms of TS.
Hypnotherapy treatment for Tourette’s syndrome is a session that will help you relax deeply and on the level of subconscious learn how to redirect the energy that builds up before a tic.
Below are the benefits of hypnosis for tics:
- Have fewer and less severe symptoms
- Experience a growing sense of self-command
- Feel less defined by your condition
- Are more relaxed and at ease in general
- Become more naturally skilled at using self-hypnosis to control your tics.
Homeopathy as a treatment of Tourette’s Syndrome.
Natural homeopathic medicines can greatly help in the treatment of Tourette syndrome without side effects. Homeopathic remedies based on natural substances get to the root of the disorder and contribute to a complete cure. These remedies are completely safe and can only help, never interfere with the treatment. We have obtained excellent results in the treatment of this disease produced by Victor Tsan, MD, thanks to homeopathic remedies, which have given them confidence again and allowed them to lead a healthy and enjoyable life.
Spasms and tremors are the main indicative characteristics that indicate the use of Agaricus, one of the main remedies for motor tics. It is used in cases where there are marked motor tics, such as eye twitching, facial twitching, leg trembling, head jerking, etc. Spasms usually stop during sleep. There is a trembling sensation in the lips and lower jaw area. Hand movement is better during manual work. The kid tends to have rapid and hurried activities of the upper extremities. There may be sudden movements of the legs. It is a homeopathic treatment for spasms and is recommended to cure tics in children who are hyperactive and clumsy, without fear of danger.
Main indications for the use of Agaricus Muscaris in Tourette’s Syndrome are:
- hurried and crooked movement
- A tremor in the jaw area
- Hyperactivity and clumsiness
Stramonium is a drug used to treat frequent vocal tics in which the baby has a tendency to babble all the time. Irrelevant and endless conversations, stuttering, and spasmodic dysphonia (hoarseness of the voice) are some of the symptoms that may indicate the need for this medication. Along with vocal tics, this medicine also works on the muscles used for movement. Motor tics such as trembling the hands, clapping over the head, closing and opening the hands also indicate the need for this medication.
Key indications for the use of Stramonium
- Frequent vocal tics (like gibberish)
- Hoarseness of the voice
- The use of hands to indicate motor tics
Hyoscyamus Niger is a medicine used in cases where tics are present in the form of facial grimaces, touching objects, rubbing the genitals, and making obscene gestures. The youngster can think but is not able to respond to questions appropriately. Murmurs of absurd things and constant unintelligible chatter along with a desire to be naked are the main symptoms indicating the need for this drug. The child may also show irrelevant and frequent bursts of laughter.
Key indications for the use of Hyoscyamus Niger in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome
- Unintelligible chatter
Zincum Metallicum is a drug that plays an essential role in muscle control and coordination. Stirring of the lower limbs, restless legs, keeping the feet in constant motion, shaking of the body, and shaking of the hands while writing is the symptoms that indicate the need for this medication. Zinc is also used to treat echolalia, where the child repeats everything that is said to him. It is also used to treat spasmodic contractions of the face, head rolling, and teeth grinding.
Key indications for using Zincum Metallicum in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome
- Teeth grinding
Argentum is a medicine used to treat cases where tics usually get worse when a person is anxious. The medicine relieves anxiety and nervousness in children and helps in cases of loss of voluntary muscle control and tremors of body parts. Some symptoms are hand tremors, writing difficulties, trembling legs, and balance problems, unsteady walking without observation, and impulsivity in children. A strong desire for sweets may also be present.
The main indications for the use of Argentum Nitricum in Tourette’s syndrome
- Tics are worse with anxiety.
- Shaking hands and feet
- Desire for sweets
Treatment for Tourette’s syndrome in Philadelphia
Contact a pediatrician if you notice that your kid is making involuntary movements or sounds.
Not all tics indicate Tourette’s syndrome. For many children, the tics resolve on their own after a few weeks or months. But whenever a child exhibits unusual behavior, it’s important to identify the cause and rule out serious health problems
People with Tourette syndrome normally live healthy and energetic lives. Sometimes, however, Tourette’s syndrome is involving behavioral, interactive, and social challenges that can harm your self-image.
Medical conditions often accompanied by Tourette’s syndrome are:
- Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Learning difficulties
- Anxiety Disorders
- Tic-related pain, particularly migraines
- Anger Control Problems
For holistic treatment of Tourette’s syndrome visit Philadelphia Homeopathic Clinic and schedule your appointment with Dr. Tsan to discuss which natural treatment for Tourette’s syndrome is the best for you. You can call our clinic at (267) 403-3085 or visit the contact us page.