What's the point of hiccups?

Everybody has experienced it, but why do we have them? Hiccups can be defined as "bursts of inspiratory (breathing in) activity". The most common cases of hiccups occur after eating or drinking too quickly due to a busy and overworked diaphragm. This in effect causes it to contract and cause hiccups. Another way to get the hiccups is a blockage or any issue involving the nerve pathways. This would probably be the case if you are constantly "hiccuping".

Now once you get the hiccups, how do you get rid of them. I remember a couple times were I had the hiccups for a couple days at a time and they would just not go away. Reading up on this issue, I found several techniques to bring breathing back to its normal levels. Most of these examples from taking deep breaths, to exhaling completely and holding your breath; all of them include regaining regular respiratory and inspiratory levels.

Besides breathing techiques, I have never been successful in unusual tricks to get rid of hiccups. I was wondering if anyone had the secret way to magically get rid of them because I am currently experiencing them and am unable to rid them.




I have always wondered about hiccups too. They get annoying especially when you are trying to hold a conversation with someone. Did you know that the ""hic" noise comes when the breath is cut off by the snapping shut of your glottis - which is like a fleshy lid or trapdoor that separates the food and air tubes in your throat" (Why do we get hiccups and how do you stop them). They really are annoying though and could never figure out how to stop them. According to that website holding your breath is a way to get rid of the hiccups.

I usually am not able to get rid of my hiccups either. I have tried everything from being scared to standing on my head, to holding my breath, eating sugar, etc. You name it, i've tried it. Also, when I get hiccups, I get them really violently where it hurts my whole chest and throat. The last time few times I got hiccups though, I laid down and then suddenly realized my hiccups had ceased. I don't know if the laying down has something to do with it or not. Maybe it was because I relaxed my body, or maybe it was because I stopped consciously thinking about it. Whatever the reason, I'm sure it wouldn't hurt for you to try to lay down!

My friends and I have a way to get rid of them that usually works surprisingly. If you can't get them to go away, really focus on when you are going to hiccup next. Alomost predict it. Have your friend ask you when you are going to hiccup next. This is when you really focus on the exact moment of your next hiccup. The fact that you are focusing so hard on the next time you hiccup, you won't hiccup. It's all mental. It works great for me but the key is focus. Hope that helps man. But anyway, very interesting blog topic.

I've always been told to hold my breath, drink a glass of water, or stand on my head. Usually holding my breath every few minutes helps me. This reminded me of a story I saw on the news one morning about how a person had the hiccups for an extremely long time. The longest record I checked is 68 years of non stop hiccuping (yikes!) Why? How could someone have the hiccups for so long and go non-stop? Hiccups that last longer than a few months are known as intractable hiccups. These hiccups are usually because of certain health problems (cancer, strokes, central nervous system problems, infections, or injuries)

I usually get hiccups after laughing for an extended period of time. It's always really annoying especially when I cant stop. I've been unfortunate enough to have insane hiccups in the front row of class. And having Dr. Read stand in front of you trying to scare the hiccups out of you during the lecture is really never fun. However the trick I use that tends to work for me (most times) is holding my breath and swallowing as many times as I possibly can before I have to take another breath. Granted I usually have to do this about 2-3 times but apparently I have really stubborn hiccups.

These are some very interesting comments! Michael brings up a very good idea by tricking our brain into thinking that we are going to hiccup, actually causing the brain to cease the hiccups. After submitting this blog, I decided to do a little more research and found the same information as Torri did with the severe health problems such as cancer or CNS problems. And maybe laying down will even help! Thank you for your input guys, maybe these hiccups will finally go away now. But before I leave, I was wondering if anyone knew if hiccups damage the respiratory system at all due to its physical strain.

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