Facebook Pixel

Why do we hiccup?

By September 12, 2014 - 5:00pm
Rate This

Every once in a while I get a case of the hiccups. Why do we hiccup? What causes hiccups?

Add a Comment1 Comments

HERWriter Guide

Hi Beth -

What I great question! I get hiccups at times as well, but never really thought about the cause until I saw your question.

Hiccups occur when your the diaphragm becomes irritated - the diaphragm is a dome-shaped muscle at the bottom of the chest. Most of the time the diaphragm helps pull air into the lungs when you inhale, and then relaxes and helps air go back out of the lungs when you exhale.

You get hiccups when the diaphragm is irritated, which can be from eating too fast, eating too much, nerves, irritants in the throat or stomach, and other causes. The irritation causes the diaphragm to pull down and suck air into your throat which hits your voice box and closes your vocal cords, causing a hiccup.

While short term hiccups can be a nuisance, long term hiccups can be a sign of a medical problem. Please see this article written for the EmpowHER community for more information - Long-Term and Intractable Hiccups.

Now we both know more about hiccups. Hope this helps and thanks again for your question.



September 12, 2014 - 5:45pm
Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy
Add a Comment

All user-generated information on this site is the opinion of its author only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for any medical conditions. Members and guests are responsible for their own posts and the potential consequences of those posts detailed in our Terms of Service.