Because I’m lazy, I still have to make dinner, and I’m ready to call it quits for the night, I’m re-working a response to an email I received a few days back. This mama is new to Tourettes and wanted to know if she should consider getting a mouthpiece for her son. My honest response was “No.” I think there’s other things you can try first.
Mouthpiece that Cures Tourettes?
See my article from a few years back on this.
Before investing time and energy into an appliance, I would start with basics first. (Ex: Flying across the country spending thousands of dollars for a dentist is like getting a $500 Vitamix Juicer when you’ve never tried eating apples. Start small!)
How to Proceed with Mild Moderate Tics
Here’s what I suggest – and I’m open to yours!
1. MTHFR: Get your child tested for the MTHFR gene. See blog last week.
2. Fancy Vitamins: Once you have results – and assuming your child has the wonky MTHFR gene (which means they are not processing vitamins like non-wonky processing MTHFR folk) plunk down cash for good methylating vitamins.
3. Non-Fancy Vitamins: If no wonky gene exists, then just do regular vitamins and supplements.
4. What supplements? I’ll be interviewing a doc soon on this and let you know via blog to share the love (and don’t want to give you wrong info). If you want to start something right away, I’d go with Magnesium to calm the nerves. Many kids who tic are low in magnesium. You can look into Taurine as well, but again, I’d wait until you’ve seen a naturopath.
5. Food Tests: Get your child tested for food allergies via 23 and Me saliva test or blood test. Have results read through a naturopath or holistic doctor who can then tell you what he or she is allergic to.
6. Keeping It Simple: Don’t want to deal with the food allergy test? Start with going gluten-free. Then add in dairy free if the tics aren’t better. Then, if tics still persist, add supplements. If the tics subside, put dairy back in and see what happens.
The Goose Chase! Help!
The thing about tics is that it is a bit of a goose chase. Just when one tic goes away, another comes back. It’s confusing. My book talks a lot about this. It can be hard to tell what really helped. Was it going gluten free? Going dairy free? The unicorn dust from the magical kingdom of WTF? The truth is, it’s a cheeky disorder. How much do you want to play Columbo? How much do you want to let go? It’s up to you. I always land on the “Is my kid happy and if so, time to let it go” bit. (Note: I used to land there without major kicking, screaming and more cursing than what I feared my four year old’s fate would be. I worried for nada. He’s great!)
“My Kid is Ticking – I Can’t Calm Down!”
Been there, done that. But if you don’t take it one step at a time, you won’t know what is working and what is not.
Get a Naturopath or a Guide
If you’re like me when I was new to this, it would be helpful to have a calm and rational person help you plan out your path so you don’t feel so alone. If you can afford it, do this for yourself! If not, get yourself into a Facebook group and find some rational mom who can be your walking partner through this crazy disorder.
It’s Going to Be Okay
It is. I promise. Very few kids have horribly severe tics. (Some do, but many don’t.) You don’t have to live in fear. You can take this one step at a time.
Hope this helps!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Leave a Comment
Are you enjoying these Tic Tuesdays? Is it detailed enough? I’m not a doc, so my goal is to get you moving but not give you absolutes. Please let me know so I can improve! Email works if you don’t want to comment out of privacy.
My book is available on Amazon. Follow me on Twitter@AndreaFrazerWrites or on FB.
3 thoughts on “New To Tics? Do THIS: Tic Tuesday #3”
I am a mother with a son who started ticcing at the age of 4 (which was early). His tics continued to get worse over the next few years. Thankfully, I ‘met’ the lovely lady that writes for happily ticked off and many other great woman that also had a very hard time dealing and accepting tics. My entire life revolved around researching tics, meds, diet, doctors, alternate treatments. In addition I counted his tics, wore earplugs 24/7 and always sat myself in a place where I wouldn’t actually have to look at him. Eventually, we had him tested and he’s been gluten free and mostly dairy free for 7 years. And this kid is awesome and I mean spectacular. I’m not saying this to brag, I’m saying it hoping it might help someone out there to not lose years of their life and precious time with their ticcing child because of what “might” happen down the road. Ummm, Andrea can tell all of you just how bad I was and I just could not get past it. But, I did finally get over it and my sons tics ended up getting much better and not worse, although they still pop up every now and can get bad if he’s under a lot of stress. There is no question in my mind the diet, supplements, meditation and our amazing therapist helped him tremendously. Today, he has a ton of friends, is an amazing athlete, is a star student and most of all he has the kindest heart I’ve ever seen. He recently started wearing a mouthpiece expander, which is not the same thing as the mouthpiece to stop tics. Yet, his orthodontist knows the doctor that invented it and he said it’s very doubtful that it would stop tics for most kids. I’m going to end this with two things…first, I was terrified that the kids would make fun of my son, bully him and I’d have to home school him. Well, the kids do make fun of him sometimes because he’s SOO stinking skinny (which people made fun of me for that), but they don’t care about his tics, they care about him. Second, just love your kid!!!!
I meant to say “I wish people made fun of me for that”. As in being skinny! Lol.
Tara, I remember talking to you from my cell phone. You weren’t a wreck. You were just sad and scared… like I was. So happy for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sounds like your son is doing so well!