2020 brought COVI-19 to our lives and the pandemic panic caused strife for those living with Tourette Syndrome:
Adjusting to self-isolation is proved difficult for many Australians, however those living with Tourette Syndrome (TS) faced a whole new set of challenges. The pandemic is exacerbating involuntary behaviours and ‘invisible’ conditions associated with TS and these are still widely misunderstood.
The neurological disorder Tourette Syndrome presents as motor and vocal tics. In the current environment, those with involuntary coughing, sniffing or throat clearing tics are causing adverse reactions from the public who mistake tics for sickness, highlighting the need for a greater understanding around the complexities of the disorder.
With 85% of those with Tourette Syndrome also experiencing concurrent conditions such as OCD, ADHD, anxiety or depression, the severity of these conditions is worsening amidst the pandemic. A new analysis on the impact of COVID-19 on those with Tourette Syndrome, has revealed that these ‘invisible’ conditions are triggered by the panic surrounding the pandemic, loss of routine and inability to release physical energy.
Those with Tourette Syndrome in self-isolation are struggling with increased anxiousness and obsessive behaviours as well as extreme phobias of catching coronavirus. With as many as 70% of Australians with Tourette Syndrome also dealing with ADHD, confinement is intensifying symptoms and putting a strain on families.