DEAR DEIDRE: I’m worried my daughter may have Tourette’s syndrome.

I don’t mean that she swears, which is what a lot of people think of when you talk about the condition. I think she has developed a tic.

Over the past couple of months she has started to make a grunting sound


Over the past couple of months she has started to make a grunting sound

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Over the past couple of months she has started to make a grunting sound particularly when she is concentrating on something. 

I’m 44 and have two daughters, nine and seven.

It was hardly noticeable at first but she does it a lot now, her older sister and grandparents have commented on it. 

She doesn’t seem aware she is doing it and doesn’t seem able to stop when asked. As soon as I’ve asked her to stop, she starts again.

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I’m worried children at school will notice, if they haven’t already, and tease her.

What can I do to help her?

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DEIDRE SAYS:  You are right – everyone thinks of involuntary swearing when they hear of Tourette’s but very few with the condition actually have this tic.

Tourette’s is where people make involuntary sounds and movements.

Very often children grow out of tics within a few months. Tourette’s includes both vocal and physical tics and the fact your daughter is only making sounds suggests she may well grow out of this habit.

In the meantime try not to draw attention to your daughter’s sounds as she could become very self conscious and lose confidence.

Please do see your GP for more information and advice.

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