Hiccups can be quite annoying, right?
Imagine a scenario where you are seated a big auditorium with so many people, all focused on a speaker and suddenly, the speaker takes a moment to catch some breath before continuing with his/her speech and at that very moment, a sudden sound leaps out from within you and everyone seated really close to you turns to say sorry or give you a “control yourself” sort of look. Embarrassing, right? I know.
The first question will be what exactly is the cause hiccups?
Hiccup is caused when there is a sudden, involuntary contraction of the diaphragm, a muscle that lies just below the lungs and separates the chest cavity from the abdomen.
When your diaphragm becomes irritated, it jerks downward, causing you to suddenly suck in air into your throat which snaps the vocal cord. Hence, the abrupt rush of air causes your vocal cords to close, causing that hiccup sound.
Hiccups can be caused by several things such as laughing too hard, drinking carbonated beverages, inhaling an irritant like smoke and eating or drinking too much or too fast.
How can hiccups be cured?
According to Dr. Andrea Paul, M.D., chief medical officer at BoardVitals.com, increase the level of CO2 in your bloodstream to cure a hiccup.
“You can hold your breath for 10 to 20 seconds, drink a glass of water without taking a breath, breathe into a paper bag for 20 to 30 seconds, jog in place or do jumping jacks for 30 seconds.” She said.
Here are 4 simple tricks you can try to get rid of that disturbing hiccup.
1. Hold your breath
Try taking a deep breath and hold it. When there’s a build-up of carbon dioxide in your lungs, your diaphragm relaxes, which should help you get rid of the hiccup.
2. Gulp in a glass of water
Drink a glass of water as quickly as you can without taking a breath. When you gulp a drink, rhythmic contractions of the esophagus override spasms of the diaphragm, relieving you of the hiccup.
3. Stick out your tongue to get rid of hiccups
Sticking out your tongue, like most singers do helps stimulate the opening between the vocal cords (the glottis). You breathe more smoothly, quelling the spasms that cause hiccups.
However, be sure to do this when no one is there. You don’t want to look stupiid in front of people.
4. Cover your mouth
Place your hand over your mouth and nose and be sure to keep breathing normally. The extra dose of CO2 should help.
However, if hiccups persist after 48 hours, be sure to visit your doctor.