I just thought I'd let you know that my 12 year old daughter has a ticcing disorder also. It started when she was 4 and she has been under a neurologist's care in the past. However she has been dismissed with instruction to return if she gets bad again. For awhile we were looking at touret's syndrome because she began having motor and vocal ticcing. The pediatric neurologist said she would need to have continual symptoms for a year with that before a diagnosis of touret's is made. She was put on medicine which lessened but did not stop the ticcing. She experienced a rare side effect and had to go off the meds. Off the meds, the ticcing did not increase. So she was kept off meds and today the tics are seldom and probably only noticeable to me who keeps a close eye on things. (Maybe too close???? who knows) The pediatric neurologist told us these things wax and wane. They may totally disappear for her or may come back again with a vengeance when she is a teenager going through all the hormone stuff.
I can let you know what matters most for my daughter in keeping these things at a minimum or even at bay-at least at this point in her life. My daughter MUST keep on a regular sleep schedule and this includes holidays and weekends! She MUST get proper rest. A sleepless, toss-n-turn night means trouble! NO CAFFEINE!!!!!!!!! (sorry, I know that it is not spelled right.) And I really mean- NO Caffeine!!!!!!! Eating nutritionally is important also and NO talking about or calling attention to the episodes unless she wishes to bring it up. If I point out that she has been ticcing or ask if she feels like she is ticcing more, she will immediately begin ticcing more. Our neurologist said don't point it out or dwell on it. It increases the activity.
If you are not seeing a pediatric neurologist, I would suggest that you do so. The reason I say that is because they ARE different from adult neurologists in the type of disorders they see the most of. Adult neurologist do not deal as much with ticcing disorders and the causes in adults tend to be a bit different. Our pediatric neurologist told us that he is sent many adult ticcing patients from his colleges and he HAS been able to help them minimze their ticcing. Our neurologist thinks that mild products cause increased problems in ticcing patients and told us to take her off dairy products and see that she gets her calcium through supllements. Now I will tell you that FOR US dairy has not been a problem at all. However the SLEEP thing and Caffeine things is VITAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I hope that maybe some of these things might help your family.