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Getting Rid of Constant Hiccups: What To Know

Are you a person who experiences hiccups on a daily basis? Are you curious to know what causes constant hiccups in adults and how to solve them? Studies show that 1 in 1000 people suffer from a condition known as intractable or chronic hiccups.

This condition is for people who suffer from long periods of hiccups or singultus. The longest recorded intractable or chronic hiccup lasted a record-breaking 60 years!

Having hiccups can cause stress and get in the way of your productivity. Read on to learn about what causes this problem and how to solve it.

What Causes Constant Hiccups in Adults?

Most people tend to suffer from the occasional hiccup, and this is completely normal. Hiccups happen when your diaphragm has an involuntary contraction called a spasm. Regular hiccups usually last a few minutes, but if you’ve had hiccups for two days, it is time for you to find a solution.

If you’ve had recurring hiccup episodes, it might be a sign of a bigger problem. Regular hiccups for 2 days could mean you have a condition called chronic hiccups. If your hiccup of two days lasts for over a month, it becomes persistent hiccups.

There are many hiccup causes, the usual being random diaphragm spasms. Constant hiccups can cause disturbances in sleep, such as waking up at night. You may get a higher risk of developing chronic hiccups if:

  • You drink excessive amounts of alcohol
  • You are pregnant
  • You have recently gotten general anesthesia
  • You have undergone surgery within your abdomen region
  • You have mental health issues such as anxiety
  • You have any form of cancer

Most people tend to overlook the physical impacts of mental issues and illness. However, mental illnesses such as stress and anxiety often cause both short and long-term hiccups. How you care for your mental health as mental health issues also manifest in your physical body.

If you do not have any of these listed above, it might be time to consult a doctor. Do not worry, as hiccups are not lethal on their own and might even resolve themselves. Chronic hiccups that come from things such as anesthesia or surgery resolve on their own.

Possible Related Health Conditions

If you are wondering what are hiccups a sign of, it might be due to a related health condition. Certain illnesses increase your chances of developing chronic or persistent hiccups. For instance, people with disorders related to their diaphragm will get regular hiccup episodes.

People who suffer from illness in the liver have higher incidences of hiccups. People who have stomach issues are also known to get chronic hiccups. If you have none of these and still get chronic hiccups, then you might have a nervous system disorder.

Nervous system disorders come from the damage or irritations of nerves. These specific nerves are the vagus nerves or phrenic nerves. Factors that might cause damage to this nerve are hair or anything else that touches your eardrum.

Treatment of Constant Hiccups

Each chronic hiccup cause has a different treatment. Those who got hiccups due to recent general anesthesia will have their hiccups go away. The same can happen with time and certain lifestyle changes. People who drink a lot will see their hiccups lessen as they lessen their drinking.

Pregnant women also have a higher chance of developing chronic hiccups. It is a known fact that even babies can get hiccups in the womb. There are many treatments for hiccups, and how you want treatment is up to you, but here are a few suggestions:

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Treating the Underlying Health Condition Causing the Hiccups

If you have any of the underlying health conditions we listed above, it is best to consult a doctor. A doctor can give you medication to help cure your illness and fix your hiccup. You can also ask your doctor to prescribe you hiccup medication.

There are various approved hiccup medications. Common ones are baclofen, chlorpromazine, valproic acid, and metoclopramide. When it comes to hiccup medication, ask your doctor which one suits you and your condition.

Having a Medical Procedure or Surgery

If you have hiccups due to damage or irritation in your phrenic nerve, you can opt to get an anesthetic. This injection of the anesthetic will be on your phrenic nerve. Constant hiccups due to the phrenic nerve usually go away after this procedure.

If your constant hiccups are due to damage to your vagus nerves or phrenic nerves, it is time to undergo surgery. This will most likely be a surgery that gives electrical stimulation to your vagus nerve. Getting this surgery is a sure way to solve your constant hiccups.

Get Rid of Your Constant Hiccups Today

Now that we’ve covered what to know when getting rid of constant hiccups, go and get hiccup relief. Hiccups are usually only a minor inconvenience. However, too much can be a sign of an underlying health issue.

If you’re concerned about constant hiccups, don’t hesitate to contact your doctor. Want to know how you can keep your health in check? Check out our other blog posts to discover more health and wellness tips.

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