Why Do People Get Hiccups?

Why do people get hiccups? What causes them? How do you get rid of hiccups?

A hiccup, also known as neuroaccoustic diafragmacontractions, is a contraction of the diaphragm that is caused by spasm. This involuntary action repeats several times per minute. The diaphragm is abruptly pulled down, causing the epiglottis to close.

So, why do people get hiccups? One of the factors known to be causing hiccups is a full stomach. Eating too much food or drinking too much alcohol or carbonated drinks can trigger hiccups. Hiccups sometimes occur due to eating a hot meal and a cold drink at the same time. Swallowing too much air, as in the case of laughing, may cause someone to get a hiccup. Other things that are believed to cause hiccups are chemotherapy, skull fracture, epilepsy, or even constipation.

Ordinary hiccups are resolved on their own without medical intervention. However, hiccups that persist for more than 48 hours need the consultation of a doctor. This condition is known as intractable hiccup. This can cause someone to lose weight considerably and cause a lack of sleep. The causes of this condition may be due to cancer, infection, surgery, or mental or central nervous system problem.

Together with the question “Why do people get hiccups?” is the interest to know the different ways in treating hiccups. There are a lot of ways to deal with hiccups but not all are suitable for everyone. What works for one may not work for the other. Most people find it effective to hold their breaths for a few seconds. Another way is to exhale air until your lungs are completely empty and to hold the position for a few seconds. Other methods are breathing into a bag, pulling your tongue, or drinking water.

If none of the above formulas work, it might be possible to cure the condition through a surgical method wherein the phrenic nerve gets crushed thus allowing the diaphragm to remain relaxed.

Another interesting notion that arises when asked the question “Why do people get hiccups?” is the possibility of growing taller. Is it true that people grow taller if they have a hiccup? The answer is no. Many conditions have been associated with hiccups, but having hiccups does not make you grow taller.

Now, you can avoid doing whatever it is that triggers a hiccup. Or if a hiccup persists, then surely you won’t have to worry much because you know how to best remedy the condition.

Posted at June 27th, 2011.

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