If you’ve ever had the hiccups then you’ll know just how frustrating and upsetting this can be. Hiccups prevent you from being able to relax and rest and they can even get in the way of sleep. They can be embarrassing too – being only one step removed from belching – and they can be a real challenge to get rid of. Every time you think you’re done with hiccups, one comes back and ruins your optimism!
The good news is that there are ways to overcome hiccups, you just need to know what’s causing them in the first place and what you can do to address the problem at its root.
So, what does cause hiccups? This is actually caused by spasming in the diaphragm. The diaphragm is a sheet of muscle that sits just below the lungs and which flexes in order to help us inhale and exhale. When this begins to spasm and twitch, it forces the air out the lungs and thus causes hiccups.
Various things can irritate the diaphragm and thus make hiccups more likely. These triggers include smoking, they include drinking too much alcohol and even chewing gum can play a role. In many cases though, the spasms appear to come from nowhere and it is uncertain what led to them. Thus it’s hard to know for sure what might be causing your particular case.
At any rate though, the methods you’ll employ to solve the problem will remain the same. So read on and let’s examine 15 natural ways to eliminate hiccups once and for all!
1. Get a Fright
One of the most common tips you’ll find people share when you admit that you have hiccups, is to let someone frighten you. You’ll probably have friends relishing in the opportunity to leap out at you at any opportunity.
So, does this work? Well, while there isn’t much evidence to confirm one way or another, what we do know is that getting frightened could work in theory. One reason is that a fright can trigger activity in the sympathetic nervous system as you release adrenaline and rapidly enter ‘fight or flight’. This in turn can cause changes to the tone of your vagus nerve, which controls the diaphragm.
At the same time, getting frightened will often cause us to draw in air in a very sharp and sudden manner. This too can help to stop hiccups in its tracks.