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9 Things You Don’t Know About Hiccups

9 Things You Don’t Know About Hiccups

Everyone gets a case of the hiccups eventually. It’s caused by spasms in the diaphragm that can occur for pretty much no reason. It can be uncomfortable but is hardly ever life threatening. Here are some things about hiccups you probably didn’t know.

1. If hiccups last for more than 48 hours, there’s an underlying cause

Random bouts of the hiccups are perfectly normal and aren’t the sign of any disease. That is, of course, they last for longer than two days. If that’s the case then there’s an 80% chance that there’s something else wrong that’s causing hiccups. The other 20% is usually psychological problems. In any case, if you have them for that long, there’s something else wrong.

2. Lots of things can cause hiccups

Hiccups can be caused by a number of things. Alcohol consumption, smoking, sudden changes of temperature (both inside of and outside of your stomach), a bloated stomach from overeating, shock, stress, and excitement have all been linked to causing short term bouts of hiccups. Long term hiccups can be caused by gastrointestinal or respiratory distress, diabetes,

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3. None of those home remedies work

scared people hiccups

    Hiccups only last for a few minutes and there are no recognized remedies to make them stop aside from doctor-administered medicine. So drinking water, holding your breath, or getting scared actually doesn’t help. It’s likely that by the time these events occur, the hiccups have naturally stopped on their own. Sites will still list the home remedies but you’ll notice that they’ll only refer to them as things that “may help” rather than “will help”.

    4. One superstitious standpoint are that hiccups are caused by hate

    An old wives’ tale asserts that you only have hiccups when someone is talking about you in a negative way and that the only way to cure it is to guess the name of the person who is doing it. Of course, this isn’t true because if it were there would be people on this planet who would never stop hiccuping! In Russia, an old folklore states that hiccups occur when someone is thinking about you (good or bad). A third superstition asserts that hiccups mean that you are cursed with bad luck and that Satan lives inside of you.

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    5. The sound of a hiccup is caused by your own body cutting the air off

    The trademark hiccup sound has been used in cartoon comedy for ages but how is it made? When the diaphragm contracts, it causes a quick intake of air that is promptly cut off by the closing of the vocal cords. The resulting noise pops out as a hiccup! According to studies, it takes about 35 milliseconds between the diaphragm contraction and the closing of the windpipe.

    6. Everyone can get hiccups

    If you thought there was a demographic that never got the hiccups, guess again. People of all races, all sexes, and all ages can get the hiccups from the oldest people to the youngest children. That includes fetuses that are still inside the womb. They can get hiccups too! It’s almost kind of poetic. Hiccups don’t discriminate. They also affect pretty much any animal with an evolved respiratory system including cats and dogs!

    7. The average person has a hiccup frequency of 4-60 hiccups per minute

    There is actually a unit of measurement for hiccup frequency and it’s hpm (hiccups per minute). The average person has a 4-60 hpm. That means there are people up there who hiccup once per second for a whole minute. That sounds like the opposite of fun.

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    8. Hiccups have a total of three names currently

    You know the first one which are hiccups. The other two are diaphragmatic spasms and singultus. The first one is pretty self explanatory. Singultus comes from the Latin phrase “singult” which is loosely translated as “the act of catching one’s breath while sobbing.” In the olden days, hiccups were also called yox, hickot, hickock, hitchcock, and hiccough. Eventually, it became hiccups and that’s the way it stayed.

    9. There was a guy who hiccuped for 68 years

    hiccups

      From 1922 to 1990, a man by the name of Charles Osbourne had a case of the hiccups. Reportedly, he was picking up a pig to weigh it when he started to hiccup and he just kind of never stopped. He continued to live a full life, fathering eight children and getting married twice.

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      It’s a common occurrence but we still don’t known what causes hiccups exactly. The reigning theory is that the diaphragm gets irritated somehow and decides to contract until the irritation goes away. After a few minutes, it doesn’t matter anyway because they’ll be gone. Unless your name is Charles Osbourne, then it’d be a good idea to seek medical attention.

      Featured photo credit: How Stuff Works via s.hswstatic.com

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      Joseph Hindy

      A writer, editor, and YouTuber who likes to share about technology and lifestyle tips.

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      Last Updated on March 13, 2019

      How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

      How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

      Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

      You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

      Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

      1. Work on the small tasks.

      When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

      Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

      2. Take a break from your work desk.

      Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

      Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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      3. Upgrade yourself

      Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

      The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

      4. Talk to a friend.

      Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

      Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

      5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

      If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

      Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

      Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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      6. Paint a vision to work towards.

      If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

      Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

      Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

      7. Read a book (or blog).

      The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

      Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

      Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

      8. Have a quick nap.

      If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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      9. Remember why you are doing this.

      Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

      What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

      10. Find some competition.

      Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

      Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

      11. Go exercise.

      Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

      Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

      As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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      Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

      12. Take a good break.

      Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

      Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

      Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

      Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

      More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

      Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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