As many as one in four
children suffer from the embarrassing annoyance of facial tics. This condition,
which can best be described as a repeatedly occurring spasm affecting the
muscles of both the eyes and the face. The exact cause is often unknown, but
research has demonstrated a strong link between stressors and an increase in
severity of symptoms.
Another possible cause of
tics is deficiencies in essential vitamins or minerals, such as magnesium. In
some cases, facial tics are symptoms of nervous system disorders, including
Tourette syndrome, a condition caused by a dysfunction of the nervous system.
Tourette syndrome is thought to have a genetic component as well.
Some examples of a facial
tic include rapid eye movements or eye blinking, squinting, mouth or nose
wrinkling, twitching, grunting, mouth twitches, facial grimacing, facial
twitches, and throat clearing. The condition often begins in childhood, and may
last for only a few weeks or for several years. Sometimes, the condition
persists into adulthood.
Facial tics can perpetuate
and increase anxiety levels in a child whose stress levels are already high
because of the disorder itself. Other children can be very cruel, making fun of
the childís problem. Worse, teachers who lack understanding and fail to assist
fellow classmates to understand and assist the child in overcoming his
difficulty can have a devastating impact on a childís self-esteem.
The problem, however, is not
limited to the afflicted child. Adults who must cope with a facial
tic find this extremely difficult to manage. These individuals often face
significant social difficulties. In some cases, a person can learn to recognize
the onset and master the urge that results in the facial tic. Even this,
however, can become emotionally and physically draining. Low self-esteem is
often a major issue with which these people wrestle.
Adults who obtain relief
from the painful effects of facial grimaces and other tics can experience social
rebirth. Their perception of themselves changes, and they no longer are afraid
to experience life at its fullest. Children who can overcome this condition can
be freed from the paralyzing stress that impairs their social lives, and
experience childhood with joy rather than emotional pain.
psychotherapists have recognized the crippling effects of facial tics, and made
significant inroads in treating them. These professionals have been able to
assist individuals to discover emotional factors that may contribute to the
development of facial grimaces and other tics. Sometimes, they are also able to
help a person control the repetitive behavior he or she has developed.
Sometimes, medications, such
as mildly sedating drugs, can help treat this problem. Although the medications
may decrease the appearance of these symptoms, the medications themselves can
often cause undesired side effects. For this reason, many people have turned to
alternative therapies to assist them in treating their disorder.
Two alternatives that have
shown promising potential in helping persons to overcome tics are
hypnotherapy and Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). These therapies take
advantages of the strength of the individualís unconscious mind to help them
redirect the repetitive behavior. Because these therapies address the root of
the problem by intervening in the unconscious where the problem originates, they
are much more useful than traditional treatment methods that only attempt to
control eye blinking, mouth twitches, squinting, facial grimacing, facial
twitches, grunting, or other types of impulsive behavior.
Hypnosis allows the client to
enter a restful dreamlike state and receive suggestions that allow them to
release tension. Because tics are a result of built-up tension within a
personís body, release of the tension allows them to successfully control this
behavior. After several sessions, the client should be able to experience the
ability to manage tension successfully.
Alternatively, therapists who
use NLP assist the client to train their mind to use thoughts that stress them
as triggers for thoughts that will relax them. In addition, the person is taught
to use a non-related part of the body, such as a toe, to express the tension
that would otherwise be expressed by the facial tic. This also allows
individuals to manage tension without resulting to the embarrassing behavior.
Another advantage of these
two therapies is that the person being treated does not experience adverse
effects from medication type therapies. In fact, both hypnotherapy
and NLP are often considered to be the treatment of choice for individuals
who suffer from tics, such as nose wrinkling, or throat clearing, because these
therapies do not have undesirable side effects. This relieves significant pain
and stress for the sufferer.
tics can be socially devastating and have extreme consequences. Male
children are most likely to exhibit this problem, which can last into adulthood;
however girls may also have difficulties with this. Although several treatment
methods are available, hypnosis and NLP appear to be the safest options, because
they have no undesirable side effects and are very effective.
list of the common uses of hypnosis.
© 2008 By Alan B. Densky, CH. This
document may NOT be re-printed. All Rights Reserved.
Alan B. Densky, CH offers facial twitch
hypnotherapy programs as well as a broad assortment of popular titles for all
stress related symptoms. For delight and learning visit his Free video
hypnotherapy library at his Neuro-VISION
Tics and How to Obliterate Them
Tics: Manifestation And Treatment
Tics And Facial Twitch: How To Eliminate Them With Hypnosis