How To Get Rid Of Hiccups? Top 10 Tips
Hiccups always seem to come at the most unexpected times, as well as the times you really don’t want them to pop up. They’re sneaky like that. You could be waiting to go in for a job interview, sitting in exam, or even in the middle of a first date. Furtively, they’ll spring up from nowhere to surprise you and basically ruin your life for the next fifteen minutes. Rather than be focused on the task at hand, all you can do is worry that you’ll never be able to stop hiccuping.
As annoying, embarrassing and scary as hiccups are at times, there are a few tried and tested ways to get rid of them. Unfortunately, the methods are often as weird as the process of hiccuping itself, and, when carried out in public, can make you look insane.
But the next time you’re still hiccuping after half an hour and preparing to accept that you’ll be like this for the rest of your life, take a look at our top 10 tips. Get ready because things are about to get strange.
Use Your Hands
Our nervous system is responsible for many things. It can give us gas, make us feel nauseous – and even give us the hiccups.
What this basically means is that you need to divert your nervous systems attention to something else whenever you’re hiccuping.
A tried and tested tip on how to get rid of hiccups is to press into the palm of your hand with your other thumb. Press deeply, press hard, and wait for the pain. This method might sound crazy and masochistic, but what you’re doing is creating a distraction which could put an end to those hiccups.
Naturally, you might not want to do this during a job interview.
Cover Your Mouth Up
Two of the prime causes of hiccups is swallowing air and having a bloated stomach. These two can sometimes go hand in hand; the more air you swallow, the more likely it is that you’ll be filled with trapped gas. Consequently, you’ll feel bloated.
To ease the bloating, the gas, and the hiccups, you need to stop breathing in so much air; instead, you need to get a bit more carbon dioxide into your body. You can do this by covering your mouth. You still need to keep on breathing (otherwise you’ll faint) but just keep your hand over your mouth.
Don’t do this during a first date. It looks like you’re weird.
Drink A Glass Of Water Through A Straw
This is a great trick on how to get rid of hiccups that works without anyone really knowing why. The fact is, there has been very little scientific research carried out into any of these methods that slay hiccups, and almost certainly no scientific verification. All these techniques are purely anecdotal, and we know from collective experience that they work. And drinking a cup of water through a straw, while plugging your ears, actually can eradicate hiccups.
Some folk speculate that it works because you are “swallowing the hiccup”. To us, that sounds like the balmy words of mediaeval witches. Still, it works. So give it a go! It might take a few attempts, though.
Hold Your Breath
This is one of the most popular tips on how to get rid of hiccups. This method is similar to the above, and the motivation is the same: You’re looking to keep more carbon dioxide in your body.
You don’t need to cover your mouth for this one, but you do need to hold your breath this time. So you can either do this or the above, but you don’t need to try both.
So, you need to take a deep breath before holding it for a few seconds. This gives your lungs a chance to fill up with carbon dioxide, which relaxes your diaphragm.
Eat Something Sweet
What you’re looking to do here is overload the nerve endings in your mouth with something sweet. Again, it isn’t scientifically verified, but it really does work!
As Mary Poppins quite rightly said, a spoonful of sugar makes the hiccup go away!
Or something like that.
Anyway. Place a spoonful of sugar or honey on your tongue (I know, gross), and let it overload your nerve endings.
Stick Your Tongue Out
This is most definitely a method you shouldn’t try on a first date, during a job interview, or anywhere public. People will think you’re The Mad Hiccuper who has come to scare them all.
Sticking your tongue out might seem completely pointless, but it’s an old trick that actors and singers still use to this day. They use this warm-up trick because it helps them to breathe more smoothly, relaxing them.
And because your hiccups thrive on spasms in your diaphragm, sticking your tongue out will relax these spasms, helping you to breathe like a normal, regular person once more. Yay!
Tickle The Roof Of Your Mouth
Another good tip on how to get rid of hiccups is to tickle the roof of your mouth. This is definitely something you should not do if you’re hiccuping during a first date. Your date will conclude instantly that you’re The Mad Hiccuper who needs capturing and arresting.
But in the privacy of your own bedroom, tickling your mouth with a cotton swab could be the best way to get rid of hiccups. It sounds crazy, it sounds laughable, but aren’t all these methods are little on the strange side?
Put Pressure On A Pressure Point
This method is a little more scientific; apparently there are at least six pressure points which, when pressed, can alleviate hiccup spasms.
These include the base of your throat; the collarbones to the sides of the breastbone; the small indentation behind your ear lobe; the bottom of your rib cage, the bottom of your breastbone, and slightly above the crease in your armpit.
Gentle pressure will do; you don’t want to do yourself an injury after all!
Eat a Big Spoonful Of Peanut Butter
You can eat and swallow a big spoonful of anything soft and sticky, but because the Americans took hold of this idea, it had to be peanut butter!
The theory goes that if you chew something soft and sticky, the process of chewing and trying to get the stuff off your teeth will interrupt your breathing and swallowing patterns. This will turn hiccups into history. Great!
Over The Counter Medicine
If your hiccups are so chronic that they have managed to stand up to all our crazy ideas and tips on how to get rid of hiccups, your last resort is to head to your doctor and have them prescribe you some medication. These could include Thorazine, Haldol and Reglan. Muscle relaxants have also been reported to stop hiccups, as have stimulants and sedatives.
How to get rid of hiccups? What are your best tips?