The Psychosocial Impact of Tic Disorders: Nature and Intervention

David C. Houghton, Jennifer R. Alexander, Douglas W. Woods

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Tic disorders (TDs) are neurodevelopmental conditions characterized by repetitive movements and vocalizations. Although significant research has been devoted to causes and treatments, comparatively little attention has been devoted to the psychosocial experience associated with TDs. Indeed, TDs significantly impact a variety of psychosocial domains and are often associated with co-occurring behavioral and cognitive problems. Persons with TDs are also viewed negatively by others, which results in peer victimization and other social problems. In order to alleviate negative psychosocial outcomes associated with TDs, psychoeducational and psychotherapeutic efforts have been developed. However, more research is required in order to maximize the effectiveness of such interventions. This paper reviews research related to the psychosocial impact of TDs and intervention efforts designed to ameliorate this impact. Limitations in the current literature and future directions are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)347-365
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Neurodevelopmental disorders
  • Quality of life
  • Stigma
  • Tic disorders
  • Tourette’s disorder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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