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How to get rid of hiccups: 28 best ways

What are hiccups?

Hiccups are also known as singultus or synchronous diaphragmatic flutter (SDF). It occurs when the diaphragm contracts involuntarily. When this happens, the voice box contracts and vocal cords suddenly close, creating a classic “hic” sound. Your diaphragm is a vital organ in the breathing process. According to the national heart, lung, and blood institute, the diaphragm is the main muscle used to breathe. When the diaphragm is irritated, it can make your body suck air into the throat; hence you’ve got hiccups. Normally, hiccups fade in a few days. However, it can persist for few or more months, though rare but possible, they are referred to as intractable hiccups.

Causes of hiccups

Mostly, this condition comes and goes quickly when your diaphragm is irritated. Some lifestyle factors that cause hiccups include:

  • Eating quickly and too much
  • Spicy food
  • Carbonated drinks
  • Being emotionally excited or stressed
  • Consuming alcohol
  • Exposure to quick temperature changes.

Getting rid of hiccups

1. Sip water

This remedy can relieve hiccups when you take 20 tiny sips in a row and as quickly as possible. When taking water repeatedly, your body calms down since you can’t breathe in fast.

2. Drink water quickly

In case sipping water doesn’t work, taking water quickly can be effective.

3. Hold your breath

This method works the same way as sipping water, and it can stop your hiccup by reducing the speed of breath.

4. Swallow something like granulated sugar or crushed ice

This method works like the above, and it affects the vagus nerve reflex to get rid of hiccups.

5. Gargle with something like ice water

This is another method that can be useful in getting rid of hiccups.

6. Cover your mouth

Try covering your mouth and nose using both hands while breathing to prevent the escape of carbon dioxide. The extra carbon dioxide can be helpful to get rid of hiccups.

7. Hold breathe

You can hold your breath when you get hiccups. This build-up carbon dioxide in the lungs; hence the diaphragm relaxes.

8. Stick out your tongue

It looks awkward but can help in getting rid of hiccups. Actors and singers normally do this exercise since it induces the opening of the glottis. You can then breathe more smoothly hence relieving hiccups.

9. Plug your ears

When you get hiccups, you can try to stick the fingers in the ears for around 20 to 30 seconds. You can also press the soft regions behind the earlobes, at the base of your skull. This helps to relax the diaphragm hence relieves hiccups.

10. Have some peanut butter

Peanut butter is a great cure when you need to get rid of hiccups. When you are chewing it and trying to get it out of the teeth and tongue, your breathing pattern is interrupted. This will help to relieve hiccups.

11. Enjoy some honey

Place a teaspoon of honey mixed with some warm water. Place it at the back of the tongue, then swallow. Honey relieves hiccup by partially tickling the vagus nerve.

12. Chew up some dill

This is one simple method to relieve hiccups. Take a teaspoon of dill seeds, then chew it slowly. This traditional cure can work since while swallowing the seeds will stimulate the vagus nerve hence relieving hiccups.

13. Massage your neck

This is another strange technique for relieving hiccups. You can massage or rub the carotid arteries on the neck’s left and right positions for potential relief of hiccups.

14. Hug your knees

Sit comfortably, then bring your knees to your chest, then remain for two minutes. While pulling your knees, you will compress your chest hence stopping diaphragm spasm.

15. Suck on a lemon

Sucking and biting on a lemon wedge is a common hiccup remedy. Place a slice of lemon in your tongue, then try sucking on the lemon wedge soaked in non-alcoholic bitters. This treatment has effectively cured some individuals, according to the New England Journal of Medicine.

16. Yummy chocolate remedy

This process is somehow a difficult method for relieving hiccups. Consume a spoonful of powdered chocolate drink (Ovaltine or cocoa). It is not easy to swallow the spoonful but can relieve hiccup.

17. Breathe into a paper bag to get rid of hiccup

When you experience hiccups, take your time to slowly breathe in a small paper bag. This can increase the level of carbon oxide in your blood. This will then make your diaphragm contract more hence bring in extra oxygen. Though this method is ultimately unproven, it can stop hiccup.

18. Compress your chest

You can compress your chest by bending or leaning forward. This method puts pressure on your diaphragm hence reduce involuntary contraction of the diaphragm.

19. Practice measured breathing

You can disrupt the respiratory system by breathing for a constant pattern. Try measured breathing by inhaling for a count of 5, then exhale for a count of five.

20. Try the Valsalva maneuver

To practice this maneuver, breathe out as you pinch your nose, then keep your mouth closed. This can be helpful to relieve your hiccup.

21. Squeeze your palm

You can relive your hiccup by applying pressure on your palm. You can use your palm to apply the pressure to the palm of the other hand.

22. Drink water through a piece of cloth or paper towel

You can relieve your hiccup by taking water via a piece of towel paper or cloth. Simply cover glass of cold water with a paper towel or cloth, then sip through it.

23. Suck on the ice cube

Take your cube, then suck it for some minutes before swallowing it when it has reduced to a reasonable size. This method can greatly help in easing your hiccup.

24. Gargle ice water

Gargle some ice water for around 30 seconds. Repeat this method for some time to relieve your hiccup.

25. Burping

Some individuals claim that they relieve their hiccup by taking burp or fizzy drinks. Though the doctors warn that taking soda can trigger hiccups.

26. Perform rectal massage

Another study claimed that an old man found an effective relief of hiccups after the rectal massage. You can try this by using a rubber glove and plenty of lubricants, then insert your finger to your rectum and massage.

27. Rub or tap the back of your neck

You can relieve your hiccup by rubbing the skin situated at the back of the neck. This relieves hiccup by stimulating your phrenic nerve.

28. Engage yourself in something that distracts your attention

Hiccups can disappear on their own when you don’t focus on them. You can keep yourself busy on video games, doing some calculations, or filling crossword puzzle.

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