So I can't lie. Epsom salt is not the cure-all for TS. But studies show that a warm bath with two cups of this magic for twenty minutes can greatly encourage relaxation. With relaxation comes less tics.

For centuries people have used it. Studies also show that TS kids are often deficient in magnesium - and since Epsom salt has a ginormous amount of that (I know... my scientific language is staggering) it makes sense to let our beautiful children's bodies absorb it while they're playing in the tub anyway. (1 cup with a foot soak works as well.)

I recently ordered fifty pounds of Epsom Salt from
Salt Works Inc. I got free shipping which brought it to less than $1.00/pound compared to the $3.00/pound it can cost retail. While I never run out of red wine or Yuban, I am always running low on Epson salt (because I am a terrible mother and don't say I'm not because my child would not have TS if I were a good mother.... oh wait... did my subconscious just say that? Well hardy har har your's probably has, too, or you wouldn't be reading this and yes... it's total crap. My weird subconscious thoughts - not the salt.)

Speaking of, when Rex came home from work to find this huge box of crystals, he did a quick check for Snow White's dwarfs. (Or did they hunt diamonds? Either way, it looked like a mining factory. Just go with me on this, kay?)

The good people at Salt Works graciously offered to send a five-pound bag of salt to the winner of this contest. (Translation: I asked, they said yes. Hooray for them! I will definitely be back to shop!)

If you've never tried Epsom salt, or you just like a freebie like me, this is your chance to win.

* Contest rules

1. You must leave your name here.
2. Your child must tic.

That's it! If it turns out you are really some old lady in Arkansas that is using the Epsom salt for her Birkenstock calluses, you are going to have to live with your deception and thievery each and every day. Trust me - a dollop of sugar and lies will not taste good in that Senior Burger King coffee.

Contest ends Friday February 19.

And remember: A ticking kid with confidents outweighs an insecure non-ticking kid any day of the week. (Someone, please help me shorten that sentiment.)

* Disclosure: I paid for my 50 pounds of salt, but Salt Works is comping the 5 pound bag for the lucky winner. Thanks Salt Works!
I have been reading at ACN about the wonders of Epsom salt cream. I have always used Epsom Salt in the bath (2 cups for 20 minutes in the tub or 1 cup in a foot bath for 10 minutes) since it has magnesium in it which greatly calms the nerves/helping the tics.

The forum recently mentioned that Epsom Salt cream can work wonders when placed on an area of discomfort. Example: If your child stretches his neck, place it there.

You can buy it, such as this Kirkman Labs Magnesium Sulphate cream.

You can also make it, but I'm honestly not that handy. We'll see. I am simply quoting from the link above.

1. Pour a bottle of unflavored Milk of Magnesia though paper or cloth filter (I used a #6 cone coffee filter). Discard the liquid and keep the thick residue.

2. Melt coconut oil (I melt a pint jar of coconut oil in a pan of hot water) Note: you can buy coconut oil in most health food stores--- less expensive in Asian or International grocery stores --- I buy it locally in an Asian market for about $6.00 a pint.

3. Combine and mix with a hand-held electric mixer (stick type works best):

1 cup melted coconut oil (Omega 6 essential fatty acid)
1/2 cup flaxseed oil (Omega 3 essential fatty acid)
3/4 cup Milk of Magnesia residue(thick residue from the filter)

This mixture will seize up into soft margarine consistency within seconds!

4. Store it in clean small lidded containers. I keep it in the refrigerator but it holds consistency if left at room temperature except during very hot weather.

5. Use liberally as a hand and/or body lotion. It absorbs quickly. Improved brain function, increased memory and concentration is discernable about an hour after use.

6. It may also have an effect on body mass through eliminating excess water in the tissues, I've been using it lately on my "midriff bulge" and I'm not as puffy as before. Also, more frequent urination for a few hours after application. I don't know exactly what is going on, but my clothes are fitting much better!

If anyone tries this, let me know!

AND REMEMBER...A confident child who tics outweighs a non-ticking insecure one. Go hug that ticker today!
So just yesterday I wrote about my irriatation with the tics. Part of it was seeing my son go through a bunch of movements all at once. But part of of it was not knowing, as a mom, what I should be doing to help him.

I called the office of a top Tourettes specialist from UCLA today. Amazingly enough, the assistant to the main psychiatrist took 20 minutes with me on the phone. I told her about the tic increases. I told her I was considering meds but felt unsure since Stink was such a happy kid. Who would I be medicating him for? She asked me a series of questions.

1. Is he having trouble concentrating in class? (no)
2. Do the tics impede him socially? (no)
3. Do they impede him physically other than making him stand out? (no)
4. Are his grades good? (yes)
5. Does he have emotional problems or outbursts? (no)
6. Does he have friends (too many)

Her response: Don't even bother at this time. "So he stands out a bit. He's happy. He's confident. You are doing him a far better service teaching him to be comfortable in his own skin than eradicating what makes him a wee bit different. All the most incredible/stand-out people in this world have something that make him different."


And so, that answered my question.

And so I relaxed.

And with me relaxed, guess who else is ticking 50% less? Coincidence or not? I don't know, but I'll take it.

More to come as I plan on ordering Bonnie Grimaldi's Tourettes Vitamin Supplements. I am not going to do so with the intention of "curing" TS. But I do think it will be a nice balance between "doing what I can" and then "accepting what Dominic has...some minor tics" without dulling his spirit with Clonodine.

I'd welcome comments and suggestions.

And, as always, remember: A confident kid who tics outweighs an insecure non-ticking child any day of the week. So go give that ticker a big hug! (Throw in some OCD with it: Hug him 3 times in a row. Go for it!)