‘The unknown is scary’: why young women on social media are developing Tourette’s-like tics

Doctors have been surprised to see young adults developing tics and seizures that usually start in childhood. Social media has been blamed, but the reality is more complicated

Michelle Wacek was a TikTok fan years ago, back when the video-sharing app was called Musical.ly. “I went on it for a laugh,” she says. “And then I got sucked into the vortex.” She took part in lip-syncing challenges, and followed the influencer Evie Meg, who raises awareness about Tourette syndrome among her 14 million followers.

In April 2020, Wacek was messing around in the kitchen when her husband accidentally clipped her in the [...]

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