A cure for hiccups

There are a lot of hiccup cures on offer, and a recent review concluded that none were certain to be effective. Hereís my offering. I believe it will be effective.

Open your mouth and throat, as if you needed to gasp for air after a run. But donít gasp. Instead, use your diaphragm and chest muscles to breath in at a slow and steady pace. The slow, even pace of breathing in should be consciously controlled by the diaphragm and chest muscles. Donít achieve the slow, even pace by constricting the throat or mouth. And donít relax. With your open mouth and throat, force the pace of air intake to be slow and even by the conscious use of the diaphragm and chest muscles.

When you have filled your lungs, and need to exhale, quickly reverse the inhaling to exhaling – at exactly the same steady pace. Donít relax. Concentrate on using the diaphragm and chest to achieve the slow exhale rate.

When your lungs have been emptied of a lot of air, and you need to inhale again, quickly change the exhale to an inhale – the way you started out. Continue to do this.

The idea is to consciously take over your breathing, instead of letting your body (presumably the autonomic nervous system) do it. Your body will want to do it. It doesnít trust you with this essential function. Your body may tell you that youíre going to suffocate; that is, you may feel as if your are going to suffocate while doing this. Thatís a lie, of course. Your brain knows you are getting enough air with the slow controlled pace of inhaling and exhaling.

I believe that the feeling that you need to relax and let the body take over in order to prevent suffocation intensifies just as the body gets ready to hiccup. If you hang in there and maintain control while getting past this attempt of your body to hiccup, you will have won the fight. Then you can safely relax, and let your body breath normally. You will have cured your hiccups.