Bronx teen diagnosed with Tourette syndrome raises awareness of condition
As Tourette's Awareness Month came to a close, a Bronx teenager is continuing to raise awareness.
Alicia Santiago is just 16-years old and has spoken to lawmakers in Washington D.C. about funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to learn more about Tourette syndrome and ways to help people who have it.
She was recently diagnosed with the condition and is working to educate people about what it means to live with Tourette syndrome.
"It's like holding in a cough. I'm pretty sure a lot of people have tried to do that now because of COVID. So you just keep getting that urge and it's just building up inside of you and you're going to have to let it out eventually," Santiago says. "Even though we do have tics, we are more than just our tics. We can still be individual people, we can still do our own thing and we don't have to just have people sitting there feeling bad for us, feeling sorry for us. We can still live and lead successful lives."
There is no cure for Tourette syndrome.
The Tourette Association of America says one in 100 school aged kids in the United States has Tourette syndrome or tic disorders.