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TV related tics


JPdad
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My DS(5) has been having some tic like behaviors that only occur while watching tv. He repeats a lot of noises and words that occur in the show, mimics characters movements, and nods in his head in a way as if he is following the show up, down, and side to side. The grunting/echoing of the shows has popped up from time to time before, but often disappears for a long stretch then comes back. We figured it might be infection related, but his latest trip to the doctor found nothing but some slightly irritated sinuses. His usual culprit has been ear infections.

 

Does anyone have experience or info on things like this? We aren't sure if it's a tic, a harmless childhood habit, or a compulsion. Again, he only does this while watching tv. He never repeats, grunts, or head bobs any other times. After playing video games (Nintendo Wii), we have noticed his symptoms get much worse, so we have eliminated video games. Any input would be appreciated.

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I would consider it unusual behavior, although if it is the only behavior and not interfering with other areas of life, wouldn't worry too much. At this age they are hard to figure out because little guys do some strange things sometimes, PANDAS or no PANDAS! I would certainly monitor him carefully. Even a small sinus infection can cause a flare. Sinus infections are, in many cases, the worst culprit for hiding Strep/bacteria!

 

My DS just turned 6 also has increased tics after playing video games. I have always been pretty picky about them and there are some that are worse than others for tic increase. Just a thought - I have been letting my kiddo go onto the computer for Disney's "Club Penguin". It is mild, makes him problem-solve but doesn't have the wild, fast paced stuff that many games are made of. It gives him a little connection and makes him feel like he is getting something special (we use it for incentives) without doing any harm :)

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I would consider it unusual behavior, although if it is the only behavior and not interfering with other areas of life, wouldn't worry too much. At this age they are hard to figure out because little guys do some strange things sometimes, PANDAS or no PANDAS! I would certainly monitor him carefully. Even a small sinus infection can cause a flare. Sinus infections are, in many cases, the worst culprit for hiding Strep/bacteria!

 

My DS just turned 6 also has increased tics after playing video games. I have always been pretty picky about them and there are some that are worse than others for tic increase. Just a thought - I have been letting my kiddo go onto the computer for Disney's "Club Penguin". It is mild, makes him problem-solve but doesn't have the wild, fast paced stuff that many games are made of. It gives him a little connection and makes him feel like he is getting something special (we use it for incentives) without doing any harm :)

 

We also have noticed that when he uses a computer and plays slow paced games on Disney.com or something he has no tics. If he plays Wii, he goes wild. I can't quite figure out the whole TV thing. Is he just mimicking the characters, interacting with the tv, or is it a tic? It seems to come and go, but always flares up with infections.

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Your statement "Always flares up with infections" is suspect. PANDAS symptoms wax and wane. This could be nothing...or not. Many PANDAS kids start with symptoms only associated with infections...then morph into symptoms when there is no evident infection. Mine was a classic "cause-effect" kiddo when he was younger, then had an acute episode after a T&A while Strep infected. the Strep went systemic and it took the better part of a year to start getting things under control. What has made a huge difference for us has been long term abx...as for if it is or isn't a tic, you seem to be concerned about it. Do you have a PANDAS specialist on board??

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