Symptom Tests

[Self-Test] Tic Disorders in Children

Could your child’s abrupt movements and involuntary sounds be signs of a tic disorder like Tourette Syndrome? Use this screener quiz to assess whether to pursue an evaluation with a medical professional.

Tics are sudden twitches of whole muscle groups, most commonly affecting the eye, mouth, shoulder, and neck. A tic may take the form of sounds, such as throat clearing or grunting noises. Shouting out words and profanities — the stereotypical image of a tic disorder — is rare.

Tics usually occur in waves: blinking eyes for a week or two, then facial grimacing or  vocal grunting after a period of little tic activity. Tics can be made worse by stress and physical fatigue. Boys have tics and Tourette Syndrome, the most severe form of tic disorder, four times more frequently than do girls. Tics and Tourette usually occur simultaneously with another disorder — most commonly ADHD, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and mood disorders.

To determine if your child is showing symptoms of a tic disorder, including Tourette Syndrome, take the results of thisself-test to your doctor for a full evaluation.

Adapted from the symptoms described on Childbrain.com and the Yale Global Tic Severity Scale from the Yale Child Study Center. This is not a diagnostic tool. An accurate diagnosis can only be made through clinical evaluation. This self-test is for personal use only.

Does your child demonstrate repeated sudden twitches or jerks of the extremities? These can include eye blinking, neck twisting, muscle tightening, shoulder shrugging, or any similar movement.
Does your child utter involuntary sounds, like grunts, yelps, squeaks, or throat clears?
Does your child mimic the motions or words of others, in a manner that appears involuntary?
Does your child involuntarily carry out known gestures, like waving, reaching or vulgar actions (like giving “the finger”)?
For any relevant tics from above, how long have they lasted?
If tics have lasted for longer than 4 weeks, have they been present for more than a year?
Is your child demonstrating more than one type of tic (motor or vocal)?
Do these tics ever cause severe emotional or social distress for your child?
(Optional) Would you like to receive your tic disorder symptom test results — plus more helpful resources — via email from ADDitude?

Can’t see the self-test questions above? Click here to open this test in a new window.


Tic Disorder in Children: Next Steps

1. Take This Test Full ADHD Symptoms Test for Children
2. Take This Test OCD Symptoms in Children
3. Take This Test Mood Disorder in Children
4. Take This Test Sensory Processing Disorder for Children
5. Take This Test General Anxiety Disorder for Children
6. Read The Truth About Tic Disorders
7. Learn What Tic Disorder Looks Like in Children & Adults
8. Explore How to Treat Tic Disorders
9. Buy the eBook “9 Conditions Often Diagnosed with ADHD”

Updated on November 27, 2019

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