Many people have hiccups from time to time. They are expected to last for a few minutes. You may generally wait for them to go away or manage the symptoms yourself before consulting a doctor.
Things you can do to stop or prevent hiccups:
Even though a lot of people find these remedies helpful in preventing hiccups, there is no proof that they are effective for everyone.
- Breathing into a paper bag (do not place it over your head).
- Lean forward and draw your knees towards your chest.
- Take some ice-cold water sips.
- Swallow a spoonful of granulated sugar.
- Try biting into a lemon or tasting vinegar.
- Hold your breath for a few seconds.
Most of the time, there isn’t a clear explanation why you get the hiccups; however, for certain people, specific factors might trigger hiccups, like:
- Intense feelings, such as excitement.
- Swallowing and drinking.
A medical condition or medication may cause hiccups that persist for more than 48 hours you’re taking.
When to see a doctor
If your hiccups last longer than 48 hours. Or if hiccups reoccur frequently and have an impact on your everyday life.
A doctor may want to know if your hiccups result from a medical problem or medication you’re taking. If you treat the underlying problem or change your medications, your hiccups will eventually subside.
If there is no clear explanation, they may be able to provide a medication called chlorpromazine for treating your hiccups. Although, this is only appropriate for some people.
Reviewed by – Dr. Priyanka, MBBS MD
Page last reviewed: 06 May 2023