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What are hiccups?

What are hiccups? Now, there is something strange.

5210 day(s) ago

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Hiccups are caused by any number of factors that disturb our normal breathing rhythm. They can be caused by drinking alcohol or carbonated beverages, eating spicy foods, stress, and excitement, among other things. The physical action that causes the sudden contraction and sound of the hiccup originates in the diaphragm. The diaphragm is the muscle that separates our chest and our abdomen. It is used for breathing. When hiccups begin, the diaphragm starts to spasm, or contract in intervals. This spasm travels up our body and to our larynx, commonly known as the voice box. At the opening of the voice box is a small flap called the epiglottis that prevents food and drinks from getting into it and our lungs. The spasm causes the epiglottis to open and rapidly close again, creating the sound of the hiccup.

No surefire cure exists for hiccups. All we have are a bunch of home remedies. Everyone seems to choose their favorite few and, for the most part, they stick with them. One or another eventually does the trick. Here are a few popular home remedies for hiccups:

1. Hold in a deep breath for 10 seconds. Some people say you have to count backwards for it to work.
2. Slowly take small sips of water until the hiccups subside.
3. Eat a spoonful of sugar, honey, or any other sweet syrup on hand.
4. Experience a sudden fright, shock, or surprise. This is usually accomplished with the help of friends.
5. Swallow some air and make yourself belch.
6. Breathe into and out of a paper bag until they stop.
7. Put a thin, flexible into your nose until it reaches your throat.

The cures go on and on, ranging from simple (say the word “pineapple”) to complex and superstitious.

Posted 5210 day ago

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