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My daughter just turned 3 earlier this week, and last night some behaviors that we'd noticed that we thought she would just grow out of got a lot more concerning and worse. She's always been particular about being clean and her hands being clean, though I didn't think too much of it. Lately when she gets upset, particularly when she wakes up at night, she has started to spit on her hands, which gets her even more upset, but she keeps doing it. Used to be we'd hand her a washcloth, she'd towel her hands and would be fine, but last night a washcloth was not enough and we had to take her to the sink to wash her hands. This worked twice, but then when she woke for the third time (ugh) last night, she was so worked up that taking her to the sink didn't calm her down and she started forcing her fingers down her throat and would gag and even threw up once. I'm at a loss as to what to do, especially since as she just turned three she can't communicate abstract thoughts yet, and I've been scouring the internet and can't find anything about a toddler spitting on themselves when it upset them so much. Other things, my husband is on the OCD scale and sees a lot of him in her. He's not at the point where it interferes with his daily life but he has obsessions and compulsions and has had a few panic attacks that has resulted from them. Her older brother (6) and myself are both autistic, however, she does not have any autism warning signs and does some rather pro-social behaviors that I don't think that's what it is. Other behaviors that are concerning: -She keeps her room immaculate to the point where she doesn't even let toys into her room. When I put in her big girl bed I decided to add some toys and stuffed animals and she threw a fit until I took them out. And I've tried to let her take a toy in her room for quiet time but she refuses to have one with her. She will throw anything that does not belong in her room into the hallway and cleans it twice a day, at nap/quiet time and at bedtime and has done this since she was 18 months. -She's very particular about how the covers are on her bed. The covers have to be just so and there can't be any lumps and she sometimes gets upset that we can't make her feet lumps go away. -She changes her clothes between 2-3 times per day. If she so much as splashes a drop of water on her shirt while washing her hands she gets upset and wants a new shirt. -She is starting to ask to wash her hands a lot and find reasons to do it. Like when I take her to pick her brother from school or go to the store she will ask to go potty, then she'll sit on the potty without going or even giving it long enough to have a good try at going, and immediately ask to wash her hands. -She has elaborate getting into the car seat and good night routines, where there's an ordered sequence of how everything goes, we have to give her a high five a certain number of times (though the amount of times changes) and then we have to say "good bye" to her in a particular way with a specific tone of voice and a certain number of times. I had thought it was just typical toddler until last night, but now I'm starting to worry that it might be the beginnings of OCD. The spitting almost seems like she does it to have a reason to wash her hands but then she gets so upset that her hands are dirty she spits again and works herself up even more and it causes a viscous feedback cycle and I don't know how to stop it. I actually work with children and have taught child development, and I've spent the morning contacting professionals I know and ruling out sensory processing disorder and other common childhood things, though everyone agrees that this is not normal and the only thing we can't rule out is OCD, however, I have not heard of it manifesting this early (3 years and 3 days) and there is so little on the internet about it that I'm wondering if I'm overreacting or if it will just blow over. The only other thing we can think of is that she's acting out to get attention because her brother is autistic, yet she spends the day home alone with me while he is at school (which is an intensive therapy program for autistic kids so he's getting all the help in one place and I'm not shuttling him from place to place, it would just be like having a typical sibling in a typical school for her) and he's high functioning enough that he plays well with her, he's outgrown his tantrums and typically either entertains himself when he's home or plays with her, though I don't know how she sees it from her POV. Does anyone have any insight or resources? Her well child visit is Friday and I plan to bring it up but I also think that the doctor will tell me I am crazy if I bring up OCD.
Hi! I'm so, so happy that I found this forum. Just picked up the Natural Treatment for Tics & Tourettes book a few days ago and I'm so glad I did. I am the mother of a 15 month girl, and absolutely frightened because she is exhibiting multiple motor tics. This all started on January 29th, the same day she learned to walk. I was video taping her to show my folks that she was eating with her fork and noticed she did a few odd head jerks. I caught it on video and showed my parents and husband that day but all anyone was focused on was the amazing miracle of our little one walking on her own. I brushed it off, but had a bad feeling about it. I'm with her 24/7 since I took postpartum time off and now I work from home and take care of her, so I feel like I have a very good grasp of her personality and eccentricities. The head jerk tic continued, and she did it while walking as well, almost as if she was trying to balance herself. It continued, so I made an appointment with her pediatrician for Feb 6th. Her doctor viewed the video and said it was a tic, but nothing to be concerned about, that I should cut out all TV time for a week to be safe. Our daughter doesn't really even watch that much TV. 10 minutes tops a day while I change her diaper or clip her nails. This was when she only had one tic. Still, I did what she said, but more tics started to develop, even with zero screen time. She went through several days of very odd long eye blinks which almost seemed to disorient her for a moment while she either ate or walked. She had a head flailing movement which leaned for left. Others came and seem to go since her first tic Jan 29th. I told our pediatrician via a phone call about all of this on the following Tuesday, and mentioned that I had / have OCD (not as bad as when I was between 4-10 years old). The doctor then quickly made a referral. I was referred to CHLA to see the neurologists there and we went Feb 19th. The two neurologist there (very nice, but sadly not helpful), were really surprised that someone this young was indeed exhibiting tics, but had little advice or ideas as to what to do, other than "wait it out." I also showed them a video of my daughter when she was about 7 months old. We had to get an EEG for her because we thought she might be exhibiting seizures, her head was nodding forward almost like she was about to fall asleep, but with her eyes open. Now the neurologists felt like those were actually tics, at 7 months! Our daughter also fell out of our bed January 11th. It was terrifying and she busted open her nose/mouth, we rushed her to the ER. Everyone there reassured us that there was no need to do any scans, and that the best place for her to fall with on her face. Thank goodness she healed quickly. I asked them about Magnesium supplementation and was told that it's a fairly recent topic in their radar. I told them about her ticcing in her sleep. We bedshare, and now are too scared to sleep train out of fear that it will make her tics much worse. I also told them about her terrible sleep since birth, the fact that she's teething with 5-7 teeth coming in (4 of which are molars), and about her HORRIBLE digestive issues. Our daughter is chronically constipated, no matter how organic and well we feed her. She has a good high fiber diet. None of this seemed to worry them, or seem like read flags. I've read about the potential of Dysbiosis, her possibly being allergic to gluten (so we have cut it out but still haven't seen much of a difference), switched to goat milk which she didn't really like, and stopped all her organic pouch foods that have preservatives. Now we only do cold pressed pouch food which we rarely feed her but they at least have zero preservatives. I'm so sorry to post such a long letter, but I'm very worried. I'm just not sure what the next steps for my daughter should be, should we really wait it out?? I am asking specifically if 15 months is way too early to be exhibiting tics (since 3yo seems to be when the are detected earliest), and does this mean that she has a much higher chance of having Tourettes? Does this mean her chances of these tics becoming chronic higher? I can't find anything in the forums here, or anywhere online about a child this young. We have an appointment with an allergist this following Monday and was hoping I can have some help figuring out which tests specifically he should run. Lastly, are there any Naturopathic/holistic doctors or pediatric nutritionists in the Los Angeles area I can be recommended? THANK YOU so so much, and am so happy to find this forum / the incredible books. It seems like tics/tourettes are so under documented and reported and most doctors just don't know much about it. I can't believe that "wait and see if it goes away," and "if it doesn't there are really strong drugs with horrible side effects we can try," is all most of the medical community is willing to do.
My daughter began with a cough/throat clearing "tic" we believe after she had a cold/ear infection about 2 months ago. The "cough" never really went away. Instead it became a noticeable, odd "cough, clearing". I assumed she was dealing with allergies since she was doing it repetitively/daily and it was exactly around spring time. After about six weeks I took her to the pediatrician who said it was a tic and to follow up after getting an x-ray to rule out an obstruction in her throat. No obstruction and I am waiting to take her to see her normal pediatrician as well as our naturopath and an allergist. After reading everything online, I realize that this is in fact a vocal tic. I've been taking notes on when she does it most, how long, etc...but I am in a complete panic. She is a normal, amazing little 2 and a half year old and I am devastated by her developing a possible life disorder. It literally appeared out of thin air. There are no family histories of tics/tourettes/behavioral disorders. She is a bit sensitive and has the normal toddler melt downs from time to time but there is literally nothing else alarming. Can someone shed some light on what else I can do to prepare myself for the road ahead? Other than the doctors I mentioned above, should I be making an appointment to take her to a specialist? I'm concerned our general pediatrician isn't going to have the correct knowledge to direct us appropriately. Any advice from someone who has gone through this with a young child or had similar experiences would be hugely appreciated right now. -teary eyed, worried Mom over here.