Melanie Sykes Clarifies Recent Comments About Having Tourette's Syndrome

The former daytime presenter has said she "self-identifies" as having the condition.
Melanie Sykes at the 2020 NTAAs
Melanie Sykes at the 2020 NTAAs
David M. Benett via Getty Images

Melanie Sykes has addressed comments she made about having Tourette’s syndrome during a recent interview.

Earlier this week, the former daytime host – who was diagnosed with autism in 2021 – appeared on her friend Alan Carr’s podcast Life’s A Beach.

Early on in the interview, Melanie vowed that she would try not to swear “because I’ve just discovered I have Tourette’s”.

A number of media outlets subsequently ran stories suggesting Melanie had been diagnosed with the condition, to which she later responded on Twitter: “For the record I have NOT been ‘diagnosed’ with Tourettes.

“I self-identify because of my studies and understanding of the pre-existing ‘conditions’ that are hand in hand in some autistic people.”

The NHS website describes Tourette’s as a “condition that causes a person to make involuntary sounds and movements” known as “tics”.

Physical tics can include eye rolling, shoulder shrugging and “jerking of the head or limbs” among numerous others, while coughing, whistling, tongue clicking and repetition of words and sounds are all examples of vocal tics.

Involuntary swearing is also a Tourette’s tic, although this only affects around one in 10 people who have the condition, per the NHS.

Elsewhere in her Life’s A Beach interview, Melanie told the comedian: “I am wired a completely different way and I’m only just understanding it.

“Where I used to think ‘what’s wrong with me?’. Now I know it’s everything that’s right with me.”

Melanie Sykes and Alan Carr in 2018
Melanie Sykes and Alan Carr in 2018
Dave J Hogan via Getty Images

Melanie previously wrote in her Frank newsletter of her autism diagnosis: “Finally, so many things made sense. I now have a deeper understanding of myself, my life, and the things I have endured.”

Listen to Melanie Sykes’ interview on Life’s A Beach here.


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