Have you ever observed someone before, I mean just watch them from a distance, that has a tic? A twitch of some sort or maybe someone who winks a lot or makes odd facial expressions that seem weird or inappropriate? I have seen a couple of people do that and I find it interesting and somewhat annoying and distracting. As with any annoying thing/quirk I have ever encountered, it prompted me to ask questions and get some information about it before being judgmental about it.
It turns out, based on some first hand questioning, that these quirky annoying tics are not at all directed at anyone in particular and are not even voluntary. I have asked 4 people that have these twitches what it was about and they all told me that it was a disorder called Tourette’s Syndrome. I would have asked them more questions about it but the constant grimace, nose twitch and blinking is very distracting, so I did what a normal curious person would do, look it up on the net.
The first thing I looked for is whether it was contagious or infectious, just to be sure that I wouldn’t end up having it, good thing it isn’t. After I got that out of the way, it was time to know more about that mysterious twitch.
Tourette’s Syndrome according to wikipedia is “an inherited neurological disorder with onset in childhood, characterized by the presence of multiple physical (motor) tics and at least one vocal (phonic) tic”. It means that the twitches and winks start out early on and would probably become more complicated as a child matures, it can eventually involve movement on the entire body. There are also cases of vocalizations like grunts, barks and other weird noises, I haven’t met anyone who does that but it would probably be an interesting conversation specially if they have coprophalia ( the involuntary use of obscene words ) or echolalia otherwise known as mocking, although it’s involuntary and probably not meant to hurt or offend people, it can still be a pretty shocking experience.