Last summer we changed our son’s daycare center to one closer to home. Jimmy, almost 3 years old now, had only been there a few weeks when we noticed that on occasion he would blink his eyes more often than usual. The blinking was mild and soon went away, so my wife and I weren’t too concerned.
That all changed when we picked him up from daycare one day to find very rapid eye-blinking. We tried not to panic, and observed him for a few days. The eye-blinking continued and was definitely abnormal. His tics were so bad I didn’t know how he could keep his eyes closed to sleep. My wife is a nurse and we were prepared to take him to his pediatrician. (He is generally healthy, but he does have major reactions to insect bites.)
Before taking that step, I got online and looked through articles on the ACN Latitudes website. ACN’s What is Tourette Syndrome article was a great starting point. The Forums for tics and Tourettes also had a lot of information. I took note of different “triggers” for tics that parents and doctors had reported, and wrote down the ones I thought might possibly be involved with Jimmy.
It was clear from the reports that diet and the environment—like chemical exposures or allergens—could cause or aggravate tics. So, I focused in those areas. I didn’t know if I was on a wild goose chase, but I wanted to eliminate triggers and see what happened.