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Posted by on Sep 11, 2015 in Tell Me Why |

What Causes Hiccups?

What Causes Hiccups?

There are a few reasons for getting hiccups. Usually, we get them from eating too fast or too much. Between the lungs and stomach is a wide muscular wall which is called the diaphragm. When we breathe, our diaphragm pushes air in and out of our lungs.

Sometimes, overeating and gulping food, or even laughing a lot, will irritate the nerve that controls the diaphragm. Then, instead of working rhythmically, the diaphragm reacts with a series of quick jerks, which makes you suck air into your throat suddenly. The result is a case of the hiccups.

Most cases of hiccups only last a few minutes. Some cases of the hiccups can last for days or even months, but this is very unusual and it’s usually a sign of another medical problem.

You’ve probably heard lots of suggestions for how to get rid of hiccups, and maybe you’ve even tried a few. Holding your breath and counting to ten is one way some people can get rid of their hiccups.

Other people say that drinking from the “wrong” side of a glass of water is the way to become hiccup-free. Putting sugar under your tongue might work, too. And maybe the most famous treatment — having someone jump out and scare you when you’re not expecting it — helps some people wave goodbye to their hiccups.

Content for this question contributed by Sandra Law, resident of Tampa, Hillsborough County, Florida, USA