Showing posts with label Hiccups. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hiccups. Show all posts

Aug 21, 2015

How to Stop Hiccups

Hiccups are caused by a spasm in the diaphragm. The diaphragm is the muscle that separates your thorax (including your lungs and heart) from your abdomen (including your stomach and intestines). When you breathe in, your diaphragm contracts and pulls down and becomes flat in order to make room for more air in the lungs. When you breathe out, your diaphragm expands and forces air out of your lungs.

During a hiccup, your diaphragm spasms causing you to take a quick breath in. This breath in is then interrupted by the epiglottis closing and causing a “hic” sound. (FYI, the epiglottis is a flap that covers the space between the vocal cords).

It is possible to stop them within 60 seconds or so by swallowing a teaspoon filled with dry sugar. Specialists believe the abrupt sweetness on the tongue overloads the nerve endings in the mouth and blocks the hiccup spasm.

A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine and also found on showed when a spoonful of granulated sugar is eaten, it was found to be effective in 19 out of 20 patients.

Feb 14, 2012

Hiccup Cure

Rub an ice cube on your Adam's apple for a minute. The coldness interrupts the reflex arc from your brain to your diaphragm that causes hiccups.

Dec 7, 2010


The first air-breathing fish and amphibians extracted oxygen using gills when in the water and primitive lungs when on land. To do so, they had to be able to close the glottis, or entryway to the lungs, when underwater. The entryway, or glottis, to the lungs could be closed. When underwater, the animals pushed water past their gills while simultaneously pushing the glottis down. We descendants of these animals were left with vestiges of their history, including the hiccup. In hiccuping, we use ancient muscles to quickly close the glottis while sucking in air. Hiccups no longer serve a function. One of the reasons it is so difficult to stop hiccuping is that the entire process is controlled by a part of our brain that evolved long before consciousness.