Hiccup Solution

In the 10 Jan 1997 article “What are hiccups and why do we get them?” (pls forgive me - I don’t know how to link yet), Cecil reported on a numerous amount of proposed solutions to a case of the hiccups.

I remember (or, more accurately, half-remember from a long-ago and half-forgotten source) hearing that hiccups are like a “mistake” in the way your body processes oxygen (on the chemical level, of course - it’s hard to make a mistake in the mechanics of breathing).

Thus, I have found a solution that works, at least for me, every time.

It’s holding your breath. The trick, however, is to hold your breath until you’re nearly ready to pass out; until real panic begins to set in. This (I think) depletes enough of the oxygen from the chemical pathways that it will “reset” your oxygen pathways and break you out of the self-reinforcing cycle of hiccups.

Unfortunately, depriving yourself of oxygen like this probably kills brain cells. But isn’t the loss of consciousness supposed to protect your brain from a lack of oxygen? And you’re not depriving yourself of oxygen enough to trigger a loss of consciousness, anyway, right?

Welcome to the Straight Dope Message Boards, Sterling, we’re glad to have you with us. I’ve added the link for you.

To add a link, simply type: {url}http://whatever.the.heck"{/url} but use square brackets [ ] instead of curley brackets { }. Actually, I think you can just type the url itself: http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a5_118.html

I find it is more than just holding your breath. I have to bear down on the diaphragm, like I am trying to go to the bathroom sorta. That pressure on the diaphragm seems to do the trick for me, I almost never get more than three hiccups in a row.

In the past week I have gotten a case of the hiccups three times, and each and every time, my remedy has been to drink water upside down. For example, take cup of water in hand, bend forward and place your mouth on the far side of the rim, and lean farther forward until you are able to drink from the cup. Take a few swallows and voila, hiccups are a thing of the past. At least for me.

This works for me too, every time. You have to take more than just a sip or two. You need to take continous gulps for about 15 seconds.