Tourette Syndrome is probably not what you think it is.
Up until about 8 months ago, I believed Tourettes was just about involuntary swearing. In fact only about 10% of Tourettes sufferers have that aspect of the condition. The main thing you will see or hear are involuntary movements or noises, usually around the face, neck, shoulders, though really anything can be a 'tic'.
When I was a child, many years ago, I had many different tics that came and went and evolved. The thinking at the time was that you grow out of them (many doctors still think this). Really as you grow up you just learn to disguise them (after being told you look/sound silly). I've only just twigged I have Tourettes.
There is currently no cure for Tourettes and tics are just the tip of the iceberg. It is commonly mis-diagnosed as a behavioural issue but does have strong links with OCD. For me, if it happens to the left - it will happen to the right. Left eye squints, so does the right. Left shoulder tics, so does the right. The list goes on. As for the counting, things happen a certain number of times. It is different for everyone. There is no typical case of TS.
The main thing people with Tourettes want is to be accepted and allowed to tic without feeling embarassed (suppressing tics can hurt and is a distraction from what you're doing eg. in class trying to learn).
By running the Manchester Marathon I hope to raise awareness as to the struggles of living with Tourette Syndrome and raise funds for Tourettes Action who help families living with TS.
Tourette Syndrome: Inherited neurological condition causing involuntary and uncontrollable motor & vocal tics which can be painful, disabling and affect the quality of life of over 300,000 people in the UK.