Laughing tics

Laughing tics consist of forced laughter due to an unwanted urge. These laughs don’t come from happiness or humour, but the result of a tic disorder.

You’re at a funeral. With everyone seated, silence enters the room and the service begins. The silence creates an internal tension… a tension that manifests as an urge to laugh. The last thing anyone wants right now, especially you.

Why does this happen? Why me? This isn’t a tic that pops up at a party. Or even in casual conversation. The very nature of the occasion is directly affecting how the tics present, and it’s deeply uncomfortable. 

The Guilt

Guilt can be an overriding emotion, even with a good understanding of tics and tic disorders. It still feels bad to laugh at the wrong time, especially if it hurts someone else. 

Others may not know why we do it. We know it isn’t malicious, but guilt can still creep in. We shouldn’t feel guilty, but it doesn’t aways help.

The Judgement

People are quick to judge. Especially when emotions are high. In these situations emotions override logic, in a fight-or-flight kind of way. 

As well as internal guilt, feeling the pressure from those around us can be overwhelming. Add an already overwhelming scenario such as a funeral, and the experience can be damn-near unbearable.

The Embarrassment

Embarrassment is a common byproduct of tics. When we feel like this, we just want to run away. But what if running isn’t possible? Sure, most people are understanding. But it only takes one ‘tut’ or eye-roll to play on our minds all day, or for weeks to come. 

Ground, just swallow me up already.

Replaying in our minds

Laughing tics are especially troublesome as they can make us appear rude or mean depending on the environment. These events can stick with us for a long time and be difficult to shake off. 

Tourette can occur very closely to or even with OCD, often described as Tourettic OCD.

Whether intrusive thoughts led to this tic, or the inability to switch off is causing problems, it is important to speak to a professional and pinpoint the very cause.  This will hopefully lead to solutions that will improve quality of life.


Your support helps immeasurably. By subscribing via Patreon, you become an essential part of our mission to spread understanding and support for those of us living with Tourette syndrome and OCD.

The newsletter is completely free, with monthly updates on recent articles and videos.

Hi, I'm Sam. I write about Tourette and OCD to help myself and others.


Related Posts