I am new to this forum and looking for some guidance and support in regards to my 8-year old son.
About 2 years ago (Fall 2012) my son had his adenoids removed (because of constant sinus infections). It helped tremendously. But a few weeks after his surgery, he started clearing his throat quite often. I attributed it to residual irritation from the surgery and the ENT told me that was probably the case. The throat clearing stopped after about 3 months.
Then he started with what I can best describe as eye-widening for no reason. I actually called the ENT and asked if that was normal after adenoid removal and he said he never heard of it. But it stopped after a month or two, so I let it go.
Then he started with "hand waving." Everything he does, whether it is reading or playing with LEGO or eating, he subtly waves his hand over the food, toy, book, etc. It almost looks like he is casting a spell. That decreased in frequency after a month or two, but still happened on occasion.
Then the eye-widening came back in Fall 2013. I took him to his pediatrician and she said neurologically he looked fine, but to see an opthamologist if I was concerned. So I did. He was totally fine. So I went with my instinct and took him to a pediatric neurologist, who told me the eye-widening sounded like a transient tic. We did an EEG to rule out anything else and it came back totally normal.
But now the past few weeks, he has had many new tics develop. The eye-widening has almost entirely gone away, but now he is darting his eyes around a lot, like he is overly distracted. The hand-waving is frequent again. He was making a grunting laughing sound for about a week. When that stopped, he started making a grimacing, eye-squinting face. And just the other day he started nodding his head for no reason. It is very upsetting to me to see him do these things. Most people around us (friends, family) don't notice these tics or just attribute them to his "goofy" behavior. But I notice. I am taking him back to the pediatric neurologist this week to discuss my concerns. I worry that this is a sign of Tourettes or something much more serious. In terms of environmental factors, we have been working on a massive home renovation project the past 6 weeks, so I am not sure if that would trigger this new wave of tics. Allergy season is in full swing in our area (although he isn't showing any typical allergy symptoms)--last night I put our HEPA filter into his bedroom to see if that will help. Myself and my daughter have Celiac disease, so he eats 99% gluten free and relatively healthy (no dyes, overly processed foods, etc.). He takes a multivitamin, a probiotic, Vitamin D, calcium and magnesium just about every day. I even tried Epsom salt baths a few times a week for a boost in magnesium, but didn't notice any change. I am going to try and stop screen time for a week or so. Now that the weather is warmer, he will definitely get outside more and increase his activity level. Does anyone have experience with this type of situation, where mild tics occurred on and off then suddenly seemed in increase in variety? I would not consider it a "drastic" increase or affecting his school performance (yet), but it's enough that I notice it and it's worrying me terribly.