There’s a lot going on in my work life that I’m stressed about, but feel would be not cool to talk about, though it bums me out because the whole point of a blog is to complain about things you don’t quite know how to deal with.

But meanwhile, last night, the dog had the hiccups. Like, big, unpleasant ones. And so he began to do this huff. Not a traditional pant, but like breathing out really really strongly, like huh, huh, huh, huh. And he did this for about thirty seconds and his hiccups stopped.

Now, you hiccup because your diaphragm is spasming. Basically, it’s like a bad cramp in any other muscle. Part of the muscle is contracting while the rest of the muscle isn’t. So, in order to get rid of hiccups, you have to get your diaphragm back to normal. Most of the time, it passes, like any cramp.

But, there are tricks. The tricks that involve swallowing a large amount of something are trying to get the muscles around your diaphragm to work in unison for a common goal–getting the thing down into your stomach–which will hopefully pull your diaphragm out of spasm.

And breathing into a paper bag can work because it fills your lungs with more carbon dioxide, which is supposed to force your diaphragm to relax.

But I have to tell you, now I really, really want to try the dog’s method. Because it seems like it combines both strategies. By doing some really powerful exhales very close together, you’re obviously limiting the amount of oxygen that can get into your lungs. Plus, the very powerful exhales are forcing all your chest muscles into the same job, which hopefully gets your diaphragm on board.

It seems like it might work. I mean, it did for him. But it seems like it might for a person as well.


3 thoughts on “Hiccups

  1. He’s such a thinking dog that I’m going to definitely try his method next time I get hiccups. If I can remember.

  2. Thank your dog for me–this totally worked! OK, full disclosure, I didn’t try it with full-on hiccups, but over the weekend I was at that “oh no, I’m getting the hiccups” stage, so I tried several huffing out-breaths, and it absolutely went away. I’m pretty sure one and a half anecdotal cases is enough to justify writing this up as a research publication.

  3. That is awesome. I am legit going to tell people he’s a dog scientist and that his research on hiccups shows great promise for curing them.

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