Hic Hic….”Cover Mouth”

You showed up somewhere or dine with your friends or colleagues and you didn’t know what to expect. Out of the clear blue some incident that you will feel embarrass is about to take place.. Shuush don’t deny..I’m sure you have experience a moment like this when people glare at you and started telling “where the h*ll is that sound coming from?” You just couldn’t speak out coz it’s obviously coming from you. Nervously, you would wanna pretend that it’s not you or it comes from someone else but unfortunately you will be blocked to speak by the “hic” sound.

Although an embarrassing reality could hit us on a daily basis. We need to realize that it is a normal thingie. It could happen to anyone. Hiccups, hiccoughs or singultus as we call it occurs when spasm contracts the diaphragm. This spasm causes intake of breath that is suddenly stop by the closure of our vocal chords( glottis) This closure causes that audible sound.This could last within a minutes or few hours that doesn’t require any treatment, but if it takes more that 48 hours which we called persistent hiccups or hiccups that could last longer than a month which we called intractable hiccups, then it needs to be check by the health care professional. It is a sign of severe health problems.

CAUSES OF HICCUPS

  • eating spicy foods
  • emotional stress, excitement or nervousness
  • eating large amount of meal that overstretched stomach
  • drinking carbonated beverages and swallowing air
  • abrupt changes of temperature  like when drinking a hot beverage and cold beverage  (inside the body) walking outside the snow and going somewhere warm ( outside the body)
  • Eating too much food too quickly
  • drinking too much alcohol
  • Swallowing too much air
  • smoking

COMMON TREATMENT FOR HICCUPS

In most cases treatment of hiccups involve increasing the level of carbon dioxide in our blood.  This are some thingies you can do:

Holding your breath and counting slowly to 10. ( this is what I usually do)
Breathing repeatedly into a paper bag for a limited period of time.
Quickly drinking a glass of cold water.
Eating a teaspoon of sugar or honey( but this is the safest)

Methods like holding breath, taking short breaths or breathing into a bag must be avoided. This practice increase the percentage of carbon dioxide in blood which may lead to vertigo and/or fainting.