A teenager with Tourette’s has released footage showing how he struggles with simple everyday tasks.
Lewis Nickell, 18, asked his brother to film him using a power hose in their back garden in the town of Bangor in Northern Ireland.
While trying to use the hose, Lewis blurts out a series of swear words – and even inadvertently says he’s ‘wetter than a porn star’s tits’.
Although the tics can be serious, Lewis admits that he does see the funny side – and even uses his condition as an excuse to get the housework dumped on his 24-year-old brother Stephen.
‘People think it’s just about swearing, but physically it’s actually a nightmare trying to do some stuff,’ Lewis said.
‘My Tourette’s started out as a twitch in my shoulder, and you can see with the power hose how much it affects me.
‘Actually holding it and trying to get the pavement clean was really difficult, so I asked Stephen to do a video for a laugh.
‘I don’t consciously think “I’m going to shout wetter than a pornstar’s tits”, it just comes out. And the things I say are very specific to the situation.
‘Obviously this time, being around water, that’s what came out. I could barely hold the thing.’
The condition meant Lewis couldn’t go to family events, or his young nieces’ and nephews’ birthdays, in the past.
And he’s also had problems at airports – where he’s shouted the word ‘bomb’ while going through security.
Explaining that more than four million people have watched the video, Lewis added: ‘Maybe I should mention porn stars more often.
‘I’m able to have a laugh at myself, but it proves there’s a serious side to Tourette’s too, beyond all the jokes.’