A hiccup can be defined as a quick sudden involuntary contraction of the diaphragm muscle.
Anytime the muscle contracts, the vocal cords closes producing the hiccup sound.
Hiccups mostly occurs so suddenly and quickly gets you annoyed. This can cause people to try all sorts of weird and funny ideas to stop them..
Common triggers of hiccups do include but are not limited to..
- Brain tumors..
- Eating very fast..
- Eating or drinking too much..
- Abdominal surgery..
- Certain drugs..
- Excitement or Fear..
- Signs symptoms of hiccups
- Very sudden and forceful movement of the diaphragm that includes the hiccups sound..
When to see a doctor:
Most hiccups do go on their own in a very short time and can rarely cause a medical emergency.
You can see your doctor if your hiccups continues for several hours.
You will also have to see your doctor if your hiccups are associated with:
- Shortness of breath,
- Coughing up blood,
- Abdominal pain,
Which specialties of doctors treat hiccups?
Hiccups normally do go away on their own and do not require medical treatment, but however, if your hiccups last for more than three hours or disturb eating or sleeping, you may have to see your primary care provider (PCP) such as a family practitioner, internist, or a child’s pediatrician.
There can be many different specialists who treat hiccups depending on the underlying cause, for example:
If the cause is a stroke or other neurological disorder, you may have to see a neurologist, a specialist in the nervous system and brain.
If the cause is acid reflux, you may have to see a gastroenterologist, a specialist in disorders of the digestive system .
If the cause is lung disease or pneumonia, you may see a pulmonologist, a specialist in disorders of the respiratory tract.
How to stop hiccups in babies and infants:
As in adults, hiccups in newborns, infants, and babies are common and generally of no major concern.
If hiccups occur during feeding, stop feeding until the hiccups go away. Usually the hiccups will “go away” in an infant or baby.
You may want to try changing the position of the infant or baby; try to get your baby to burp; or calming him/her down to cure the hiccups.
Sometimes resuming feeding will cause the hiccups to stop. If your baby frequently hiccups during feedings, feed your baby when he or she is already relaxed, and is not very hungry yet.
If your child’s hiccups worsen or they seem to upset him, contact your pediatrician.
Simple home techniques and ways to get rid of hiccups..
Eating and drinking technics include:
Gargle with iced water.
Burping some people find that if they consume a fizzy drink and burp, their hiccups go away.
However, some doctors warn that
sodas may also trigger hiccups.
- Sip very cold water slowly.
- Place a couple of drops of vinegar in the mouth.
- Enjoy some honey.. honey could potentially tickle the vagus nerve and make the hiccups stop.
Swallow a spoonful of sugar..this technique is a popular hiccups cure because its graininess could slightly irritate the esophagus, causing the phrenic nerves to “reset” themselves, although it has not been proven.. You can also take a spoonful of something sour like vinegar..
Place some granulated sugar on the tongue. When it melts, swallow it.
A spoonful of peanut butter is a can be a cure if you’re pondering on how to get rid of hiccups.
In the process of chewing and getting it off your tongue and teeth, your swallowing and breathing patterns can be interrupted.
Drink from the far side of the glass – stand up, bend over, and place the mouth on the opposite side of the glass.
While bending, tilt the glass away from the body and drink.
Drink a cup of warm water very slowly, all the way down without breathing.
Take a thin slice of lemon, place it on the tongue and suck it like a sweet.
Pull on the tongue – hold the end of your tongue in the fingers and tug. This stimulates the vagus nerve and eases diaphragm spasms, which may sometimes stop hiccups.
Place gentle pressure on each side of the nose while swallowing.
Press on the diaphragm gently.
Breathe slowly and deeply into a small paper bag. (Stop if you feel light-headed.) This increases the carbon dioxide level in your blood and makes your diaphragm contract more deeply to bring in more oxygen, which may stop the hiccup spasms.
The paper towel trick.. Place a single layer of paper towel over the top of a glass, then drink through the towel. You’ll have to “pull” harder with your diaphragm to suck up the water, and concentrated gulping counteracts spasmodic muscle movements of hiccups.
Medical resorts to hiccups..
Normally hiccups do stop on their own after a short while but if the case becomes otherwise and it lasts for days and weeks then medical help is consulted..
If hiccups are persistent, a doctor may have to prescribe medication. This is often the case if a patient is:
unable to eat properly and is losing much weight
sleeping abnormally or has insomnia
Shows signs and symptoms of clinical depression
The following drugs are known to help people with persistent hiccups:
- Baclofen – a muscle relaxant.
- Chlorpromazine – an antipsychotic medication.
- Gabapentin – initially used for treating epilepsy , it is now prescribed for neuropathic pain and hiccups.
- Haloperidol – an antipsychotic medication.
- Metoclopramide (Reglan) – a medication used in the treatment of nausea.
Generally, doctors will reserve medication as a final resort having tried other options. Medications will also only be prescribed for severe and longer-term hiccups..
What has been your best way of stopping hiccups??