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Dr. Steve
Dr. Steve, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 370
Experience:  19 years conducting therapy; book author; newspaper columnist; former co-host of radio show
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I cant stop blinking all the time

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Hi, I'm not sure if I've possibly got some kind of mental health issue but I cant stop blinking all the time. Its really starting to become a distraction because I'm constantly thinking about it. Its kinda weird cause I had the same problem when I was a kid and it went away but it came back again around two years ago then went away for a year and it came back again a few months ago. Its hard to explain why I do it, to me its like a swooshing sound I hear in my ears when I blink hard and the more I do it the more I need to blink. I think it might be mentally related cause it does seem when things are bothering me it seems to be worse. It really is getting me down. Is it a form of tourrette syndrome because I also sometimes find myself making like slight squeaking sounds from time to time aswell, not very often but a few times a week. I'm very confused by it all. Hope you can help or give me some advice as I dont really have anyone else to turn to.

Thanks, paul

Hi Paul:


Great question... and a condition that is truly maddening. The short answer to your question is yes, the symptoms DO sound a lot like Tourette's. Particularly if the "tics" migrate from time to time (the squeaking sounds are a good example), then Tourette's is more likely. Too, the condition can be triggered by ambient anxiety, as you have already pointed out.


As for treatment, you seem to have a case whereby the symptoms fade once order and calm are restored in your life. If you feel that a period of calm is waiting on the horizon, then maybe "riding it out" will work for this episode. If however you feel that your life is being negatively impacted, and that the symptoms themselves are beginning to create distress which may actually exacerbate the symptoms (a vicious circle, if you will), then there are medication options - although the best course of treatment is medication plus talk therapy. The meds can help to interrupt some of the "looping" in your head while the talk therapy can attack the behaviors head on.


In the short run, perhaps schedule an appointment with your general physician and begin a conversation about the symptoms with him/her. Your doc will be the best resource with prescribing the medication and/or referring you to the appropriate professionals to continue treatment.


I wish you the best. If you are satisfied with the response, please hit "Accept." That is the only way i can receive credit for my answer. Thanks-

Dr. Steve

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