When the air rushing in hits your voice box, your vocal cords close suddenly and you’re left with a big hiccup. Hiccups are sudden, involuntary contractions of the diaphragm muscle. As the muscle contracts repeatedly, the opening between the vocal cords snaps shut to check the inflow of air and makes the hiccup sound.

Causes of Hiccups

  • Many conditions can cause this irritation and result in hiccups eating too fast and swallowing air
  • Chewing gum
  • Smoking
  • Eating or drinking too much
  • Strokes
  • Brain tumors
  • Some medications
  • Noxious fumes
  • Anxiety and stress
  • Feeling Nervous or excited.

Symptoms of Hiccups

Hiccupping is a symptom. It may sometimes be accompanied by a slight tightening sensation in your chest, abdomen or throat

How to get rid of Hiccups

  • Holding your breath
  • Drinking a glass of water quickly
  • Try pressing the palm of your hand with the thumb of your other hand
  • Having someone frighten or surprise you
  • Using smelling salts
  • Breathe into a paper bag
  • Pulling hard on your tongue
  • Take a deep breath and hold it
  • Stick your fingers in your ears for 20 to 30 seconds
  • Sip some hot sauce
  • Massage your Neck
  • Hug your knees
  • Suck a Lemon


Hiccups are rarely a medical emergency. If hiccups last for more than 3 hours, occur with severe abdominal pain, fever, shortness of breath, vomiting, spitting up blood or feeling as if the throat is going to close up. The person should seek medical attention.


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