Tics (vocal and motor) and Tourette syndrome are neurobiologic disorders that commonly present in childhood. Although the mainstay of treatment has been the use of psychotropic medications, evidence and clinical experience support the use of self-regulation strategies including biofeedback as effective adjuncts or, in some cases, first-line treatments.
These self-regulation strategies can be used successfully in conjunction with pharmacologic intervention and our therapists often collaborate with neurologists and physicians during the therapeutic process.
Tic disorders can have a significant impact on a child’s functioning at home, school, and with peer relationships. One aspect is that can be very difficult for a child is that “my body is doing something that I don’t want it to do.” The need for self-control and self-management represents a strong developmental drive for all children. Techniques such as biofeedback and counseling methods can assist children by harnessing this innate developmental drive for mastery and autonomy and applying it for therapeutic benefit in the control of their symptoms. Counseling, play/ activity therapy and biofeedback also utilizes a child’s strong imagination and curiosity to facilitate tic regulation. By using biofeedback children engage more actively in their own treatment process.