Symptom Tests

[Self-Test] Tic Disorder in Adults

Use this simple self-quiz to determine if your involuntary movements or sounds may be signs of a tic disorder. Discuss the results with a trained medical professional.

A tic is a sudden, brisk, repeated movement or twitch of an entire group of muscles, or short utterances that can vary from grunts to barks to clearing the throat. They happen on their own so automatically that individuals with tics commonly are not aware of them. Tics usually get worse under stress or strong emotions, but they always disappear when the patient is asleep.

Tic disorders are not only a childhood condition; they affect approximately 1 in 100 adults, too. Tic disorders do tend to get better with age, with the worst symptoms usually happening during the teen years.

The extreme variety of tic disorder that causes patients to shout out profanities and/or make lewd gestures is extremely rare. Much more common are patterns of small vocal tics or movements — like throat clearing or eye twitching — that last for more than a month.

Use this quick self-test to see if your symptoms match up with commonly known presentations of tic disorders. If they do, share the results with your doctor and discuss pursuing a professional diagnosis.

Adapted from the symptoms described by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke and the Yale Global Tic Severity Scale from the Yale Child Study Center. This is not a diagnostic tool. If you have concerns about a possible tic disorder, see a health professional. An accurate diagnosis can only be made through clinical evaluation. This self-test is for personal use only.

Have you had these tics for more than a year?

Over the past month, have you experienced a significant level of verbal and movement tics on more than half of the days?

Do these movements and sounds cause you emotional distress?

Do people mention to you that you make the same sniffing or coughing noise over and over, even at times when your throat doesn’t have a tickle? 

Have you been reprimanded or shunned for mimicking what people said, and then wondered why you did it?

Do you make known hand gestures (like giving the thumbs up) at inappropriate times, when you don’t mean to?

Do you blurt out random words unintentionally, when they have nothing to do with the conversation?

Do you people mention to you that you are blinking your eyes, jerking your neck, or twitching your nose, arm, or leg?

(Optional) Would you like to receive your tic disorder symptom test results — plus more helpful resources — via email from ADDitude?

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Tic Disorder In Adults: Next Steps

1. Take This Test: Generalized Anxiety Disorder in Adults
2. Take This Test: Autism in Adults
3. Learn What Tic Disorder Looks Like in Children & Adults
4. Take This Test: Sensory Processing Disorder in Adults
5. Take This Test: OCD in Adults
6. Read “9 Conditions Often Diagnosed with ADHD”
7. Treat Tic Disorders with Medication, Therapy, and More
8. Learn An Overview & Facts of Tic Disorders