Why Do People Get Hiccups

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Old 05-Oct-2010
Why Do People Get Hiccups

All of us have experienced hiccups sometime or the other. Hiccups are nothing but involuntary contractions of the muscle that separates the chest from the rest of the abdomen. This muscle, known as ‘diaphragm’, has an important role in controlling breathing. The characteristic “hic” sound of hiccup is produced by the abrupt closure of the vocal cord. Hiccups last for only a few minutes and occasional hiccups are not uncommon and apparently harmless. However, it is bothersome and embarrassing and you feel like you can’t do anything unless that disturbing hic sounds stops. If you are experiencing continuous and prolonged hiccups it can indicate the manifestation of other serious conditions that require medical interventions. There are many myths and beliefs regarding hiccups. Many home remedies are available for sudden hiccups, but if that hic sound is bothering you too much, see your physician at the earliest. If you are wondering why people get hiccups, then here is some information for you to investigate.

Causes And Remedies For Hiccups


  • One can get hiccups due to many reasons.
  • Short term hiccups are common and not much to worry about. Simple home remedies can stop these hiccups.
  • Overeating is one of most common causes for short term hiccups.
  • Consuming excessive alcohol can also lead to short term hiccups.
  • Hot and spicy food, especially chillies, can be another probable cause for having hiccups.
  • You may also experience hiccups if you have sudden change in temperature.
  • People who go through emotional stress and excitement may also experience hiccups.
  • Aerated drinks can also lead to hiccups.
  • People suffering from diabetes get hiccups frequently.
  • Those who are on steroids, barbiturates, or tranquilizers also experience hiccups recurrently.
  • Kidney failure and electrolyte imbalance can lead to hiccups commonly.
  • People who develop a tumor or infection in their central nervous system experience regular hiccups as their hiccup reflex control is damaged.
  • Certain diseases like meningitis, multiple sclerosis, stroke, tumors, and traumatic brain injury can also lead to recurrent hiccups in patients.
Causes For Long Term Hiccups
  • Irritation or damage of certain nerves.
  • Infection in the eardrum.
  • Tumor in the neck.
  • Inflammation of the larynx.
  • Cyst in the neck.
  • Gastroesophageal reflux.
  • Goiter.
Home Remedies For Hiccups
There are some easy home remedies available to get quick relief from short term hiccups. If you are having constant hiccups, swallow a teaspoon of sugar or try to breathe into a paper bag. Holding your breath for a few seconds also helps. Some people might get relief by gargling with ice water. However, if your hiccups are long term or if you do not get any quick relief from these remedies, consult your doctor at the earliest.

Treatment For Long Term Hiccups
Long term hiccups can be a manifestation of an underlying disease and require medical intervention. If your hiccups last for two days or more, doctors might consider any of these treatments. Based on your condition and symptoms, doctors might prescribe you a muscle reluctant, an anti-nausea drug, or any antipsychotic drug. Some surgical interventions are also required to give relief to the patient. These include insertion of a nasogastric tube in the stomach through the nose or application of anesthesia to block the nerve that is responsible for hiccups.

Old 12-Mar-2011
Re: Why Do People Get Hiccups


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