Social adjustment experiences of adolescents with Tourette syndrome.

MY Lee, Huei-Shyong Wang, CJ Chen, MH Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

17 Scopus citations


To explore and describe the experience of social adjustment of adolescents with Tourette syndrome in Taiwan. Although Tourette syndrome is a non-life-threatening disease, the inherent difficulties in controlling tics and comorbidities can cause long-term physical and psychological issues, as well as social maladjustment among adolescents. Good social adjustment can promote mental health among adolescents. Currently, it is not clear how adolescents with Tourette syndrome can self-adjust and maintain harmonious social interaction with others. Descriptive phenomenological approach was used in this study. Four criteria were applied to establish the trustworthiness or methodological rigor. Sixteen adolescents with Tourette syndrome were recruited by purposive sampling from a medical center in Northern Taiwan. Semi-structured one-on-one interviews were performed from March 2014 to April 2015 for data collection. Every participant was interviewed once or twice, and each interview lasted for duration of around 60 to 90 minutes. Data was analyzed with Giorgi's phenomenological method for data analysis. Three themes were identified from the adolescent' interviews. The themes were included visible and invisible destitution, molding a socially acceptable self, and coexisting friends and foes. Adolescents with Tourette syndrome experienced that tics are often not understood nor accepted during social interactions with others. However, with age and autonomy of adolescents, they were able to adjust and develop a socially acceptable body-image and maintain amicable social interactions with others. Accompanied by positive thinking, support from friends and families, the adolescents could achieve good social adjustments for living with Tourette syndrome. The experiences and feelings highlighted in this study can bring awareness to nurses and healthcare professionals for developing interventions that promote healthy social adjustment and mental health for adolescents with Tourette syndrome. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Original languageAmerican English
JournalJournal of Clinical Nursing
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 2019


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