The medical term for hiccups is synchronous diaphragmatic flutter (SDF) or singultus. A hiccup occurs when the larynx (voice box) and diaphragm contract, and the glottis closes. Most cases of hiccups are resolved on their own, usually within minutes. However, some hiccups are more persistent, which can impact eating, sleeping, and everyday activities, so it comes as no surprise that there are hundreds of theories and home remedies on how to get rid of them.
Here are some of the proven effective ways on how to get rid of hiccups:
13) Breathe into your chest.
Exhale and then take a deep breath into your chest. Hold your breath for 10 seconds before exhaling slowly. Repeat three to five times. If the hiccups persist, repeat the process after thirty minutes. Make sure you are breathing into your chest and not your belly.
12) Paper bag pulls
Take a simple paper bag and position it over your mouth. Do not cover your nose. Exhale into it and take a deep breath. Continue inhaling and exhaling into the bag twenty times or until the hiccups stop. This will help you control your breathing rhythm.
11) Fetal position
Sit down on the floor and gently hug your knees to your chest with your head down. Take deep breaths while in this position. Relax and avoid tensing up your shoulders or arms.
10) Iced water gargle
Gargle into your throat with iced water for 10 seconds. The ice water will shock the Central Nervous System and interrupt your breathing and swallowing patterns.
9) Hold your breath
Inhale and take a deep breath into your chest. Hold your breath as long as you can before exhaling out. You may feel yourself hiccupping, but continue holding your breath as long as you can.
8) Sugar and cold water
Mix one tablespoon of granulated sugar in a glass of cold water. Swish the sugar around in the water without dissolving it before drinking it. The texture of the sugar is key here, as it can stimulate the esophagus and interrupt the diaphragm spasms.
7) Vinegar spoonfuls
Take a spoonful of distilled vinegar and sip on it. The sour taste of the vinegar will stimulate your salivary gland production, which can interrupt the hiccups. Make sure to take large enough sips that will cause you to salivate.
6) Peanut butter spoonfuls
Take a spoonful of creamy peanut butter and swallow it in small bites. The sticky texture could interrupt your swallowing and breathing patterns. Make sure to avoid swallowing too much air in the process.
5) Raw honey with warm water
Mix one tablespoon of raw honey with half a cup of warm water until it dissolves completely. Drink this in big gulps. Honey may have an effect on the vagus nerve, stopping the hiccups.
4) Organic dill seeds
Find some organic dill seeds and chew on them. Like raw honey, dill seeds may stimulate the vagus nerve, which could send a signal to the brain to stop the hiccups.
3) Strong pulls
Place a coffee filter over a cup of water and try to drink through the filter. This will force you to take stronger “pulls” with your diaphragm, which could interrupt the hiccups.
2) Pinch yourself in the arm
Pinch yourself in the arm hard enough to hurt. This slight stressor can cause a jump in your central nervous system, which could stop the hiccups.
1) Medications for Hiccups
If the hiccups are long-term, seek medical assistance. Your doctor may prescribe medication, especially if your quality of life is affected. These include muscle relaxants, anti-psychotic medications, epilepsy medications, and nausea medications. Weight loss, insomnia, loss of appetite and clinical depression are just a few side effects of persistent hiccups.