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Why do we have hiccups?

Why do we have hiccups?
Shangita Haq from Greater London (Age 35-44)

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One Response

  1. Hiccups are bursts of inspiratory (breathing in) activity. The muscles we use when we take in a breath are the intercostal muscles situated between the ribs, and the diaphragm – a sheet of muscle below the lungs.

    Most simple cases of hiccups come after eating or drinking too much or too quickly. The stomach, which is situated right below the diaphragm, becomes distended and irritates it. This will cause the diaphragm to contract, as it does when we breathe in.

    Sometimes hiccups will occur because of a disturbance to the nerve pathways from the brain to the muscles involved. This explains why hiccups may occur with temperature changes or emotional situations. It is also the reason that a sudden shock can sometimes stop an attack.

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