E.R. physician Dr. Travis Stork demonstrates what causes hiccups.

Many conditions are associated with hiccups, but none has been shown to be the cause of hiccups.

Some causes of hiccups include:

Certain foods and beverages can trigger hiccups. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC), hot or spicy foods, such as hot peppers, miso and curry and hot or spicy liquids are particularly known to cause hiccups. Drinking carbonated beverages, such as soft drinks or sparkling water, can also cause hiccups, due to swallowing air. In addition, the more carbonation a person consumes, the greater his or her chance becomes of hiccupping. Last but not least, excessive alcohol consumption may result in hiccups.

Many conditions are related to hiccups, however none has been shown to be the cause of hiccups.

7. Even medications are known to cause prolonged hiccups.

If the above suggestions do not work and the hiccups continue, consulting your doctor is necessary. She may have some ideas about what causes hiccups in your unique situation. There are medications that can be helpful; the most commonly used drug is Chlorpromazine, better known as Thorazine. Physicians can also place a plastic or rubber suction tube through the nostril into the nose in order to stimulate the pharynx with a back and forth movement. In addition, for severe hiccup cases an operation can be done to cut or paralyze the phrenic nerve. The phrenic nerve facilitates contraction of the diaphragm and paralyzing it will end intractable hiccups.

3. Brain tumors associated with the brain stem and  are also thought to cause prolonged hiccups.

Some medical conditions are also thought to cause hiccups, usually hiccups of the persistent or intractable variety. The most common that also triggers normal hiccups is stomach acid moving into the esophagus. Neurological lesions involving the brain-stem, metabolic disorders, irritation of the Phrenic nerve (the one that goes to the diaphragm) are also known to cause hiccups. Other known medical causes of hiccups include: hyperglycemia, anorexia, meningitis, encephalitis, heart attack, stroke, multiple sclerosis, blows resulting in brain damage, electrolyte imbalance, kidney failure, certain types of infections… the list goes on and on.

4. Certain chronic medical issues such as renal failure have been said to cause hiccups.


In children, common causes of hiccups include overeating, consumption of carbonated liquids, sudden excitement, fear, etc. Overeating and carbonated liquids cause the stomach to distend, and trigger spasmodic contractions. In these cases, hiccups eventually disappear on their own. It is difficult to determine the causes of hiccups in babies. Usually, these are triggered as a result of taking in too much of air while feeding. Though the instances are quite rare, hiccups in infants are triggered by underlying health problems, like gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), at times.Sometimes hiccups are caused by a more serious trigger, such as nerve damage or a problem with the central nervous system. Gastroesophageal reflux can irritate the phrenic nerve, causing hiccups. Reflux is commonly caused by eating spicy foods and some medications can cause reflux as a side effect. A tumor, cyst or goiter in your neck may also be the cause of persistent hiccups, as well as a chest or throat infection. Disorders that may affect your central nervous system and cause hiccups are stroke, multiple sclerosis, tumors, meningitis, encephalitis or injury to the brain as a result of trauma. Certain diseases, such as kidney failure and diabetes, can also cause the hiccups. If your hiccups persist for more than 48 hours it is important to see a doctor, as there may be a serious reason behind your hiccups.Irritation of the nerves that extend from the neck to the chest can cause hiccups. Many conditions can cause this irritation and result in hiccups, including eating too fast and swallowing air, chewing gum, , eating or drinking too much, strokes, brain tumors, damage to the vagus or phrenic nerve, some medications, noxious fumes, and , and in , hiccups may be associated with crying, , or (). Today I found out what causes hiccups. In medical terms, a hiccup can be called a hiccough, a synchronous diaphragmatic flutter, or singlutus. Hiccups are classified

Hiccups are sudden, involuntary contractions of the diaphragm muscle. As the muscle contracts repeatedly, the opening between the vocal cords snaps shut to check the inflow of air and makes the hiccup sound. Irritation of the nerves that extend from the neck to the chest can cause hiccups. What Causes Fetal Hiccups As mentioned above, these hiccups are normal and are necessary for the growth of the baby. Studies show that hiccups are found to occur, only after the fetus develops the central nervous system. Such hiccups may start during the

Food choices, eating behavior, temperature changes and emotional stress commonly cause hiccups after eating. If hiccups last longer than a few days, MedlinePlus suggests seeking medical attention, as they may indicate a serious medical condition.

So, hiccups are the result of diaphragm spasms. But what causes the irritation that leads to the spasm? There are only a few culprits for common hiccups, which usually disappear within a few minutes. One of the main irritants is a full -- a result of swallowing too much or air. A distended stomach pushes against the phrenic nerves of the diaphragm, increasing the possibility of irritation and, therefore, hiccups. A full stomach of spicy food can do double damage -- hot foods can be especially irritating to those nerves. As any smoker on a bender can tell you, excess and drinking can also cause hiccups. A rapid temperature change outside or inside your stomach, from a cold night or a hot beverage, can be irritating enough to induce hiccups. Finally, emotions -- shock, excitement and -- can also trigger a hiccup fit.The primary causes for hiccups include eating a large meal or drinking alcohol, Mayo Clinic reports. Sometimes people develop hiccups after experiencing sudden excitement. Other causes, according to WebMD, including smoking, swallowing air or extreme change in stomach temperature from consuming something very hot followed by something very cold. Occasionally hiccups are an indicator of a more serious medical condition. air seems to cause hiccups in some cases. Eating or drinking too quickly can cause spasms, because swallowed air can exert sudden pressure in the abdomen. Certain foods with large pockets of air, such as sourdough bread, can also cause the diaphragm to contract. Drinking alcoholic, carbonated, or cold beverages is sometimes linked to a greater chance of hiccuping episodes.