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15 Ways to Cure Hiccups

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After suffering from the same case of hiccups for over a month, you might be desperate for a solution. You might—as 21-year-old Anna Mayer did in 1944—even reach out to the president for a special dispensation to have your local doctor excused from his military service to come back to Queens and cure you. Don't have a direct line to the president? Don't worry. You don't even have to wait till your hiccups reach the level of national crisis to try the cures below. Most of these home remedies work by overwhelming the vagus nerve—which causes hiccups when it becomes irritated—with another sensation.

1. Place a teaspoonful of sugar on the back of your tongue.

2. Stick your fingers in your ears. (The same vagus nerve has branches in your auditory system.)

3. Gargle with water long enough to interrupt the hiccup cycle.

4. Breathe into a paper bag (not so long that you pass out!) to "distract" your nervous system with ridding the body of an increasing level of carbon dioxide.

5. Eat a big spoonful of peanut butter—the process of chewing the sticky stuff should distract your breathing away from the hiccups.

6. Eat some powdered chocolate mix. Swallowing the spoonful isn't easy and should short-circuit the hiccups.

7. Place a paper towel over the top of a glass, then drink water through the towel. You'll have to "pull" harder with your diaphragm to suck up the liquid and that should reset your breathing.

8. Stick out your tongue to stimulate the opening between the vocal cords and allow yourself to breathe more smoothly.

9. Swallow a teaspoon of vinegar, if you can. Suck on a lemon for the same sour effect.

10. Hold the top of a door frame and then lean forward.

11. Some people claim you can distract yourself out of having the hiccups so try to occupy your mind with tasks like reciting the alphabet backwards.

12. Take gulps of water in rapid succession; rhythmic contractions of the esophagus override spasms of the diaphragm.

13. Drink from the "opposite" side of the glass. This one is tricky and requires you to tilt your head almost upside down.

14. Go for the tried-and-true scare tactic, which is just another form of mental distraction.

15. A long, hopefully passionate kiss supposedly does the trick—as long as your hiccups don't ruin the mood.

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Animals
Why Do Female Spotted Hyenas Give Birth Through Their Pseudo-Penises?
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At the zoo, you can sometimes tell the difference between male and female animals by noting their physical size, their behavior, and yes, their nether regions. Hyenas, however, flip the script: Not only are lady spotted hyenas bigger and meaner than their male counterparts, ruling the pack with an iron paw, they also sport what appear to be penises—shaft, scrotum, and all.

"Appear" is the key word here: These 7-inch-long phalluses don't produce sperm, so they're technically really long clitorises in disguise. But why do female hyenas have them? And do they actually have to (gulp) give birth through them? Wouldn't that hurt … a lot?

The short answers to these questions are, respectively, "We don't know," "Yes," and "OW." Longer answers can be found in this MinuteEarth video, which provides the full lowdown on hyena sex. Don't say we didn't warn you.

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science
Are Sex, Drugs, and Rock 'n' Roll Really Linked? Researchers Investigate
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Around the world, sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll are said to go hand-in-hand. But do they? As PsyPost reports, a pair of Pennsylvania psychologists recently dove into the empirical evidence tying the three together, asking college students to talk about their drug use, sex lives, and music preferences and talents to suss out whether people who play and enjoy rock music really do have more active sex lives and drug use.

Published in the journal Human Ethnology Bulletin, the study [PDF] of 467 students relied on self-reporting, which isn't typically the most reliable evidence—people are wont to exaggerate how often they've had sex, for instance—but the survey also asked them about their desires, posing questions like "If you could, how frequently would you have sex?" It also asked about how often the students drank and what drugs they had tried in their lifetimes. They also described their musical experience and what kind of music they listened to.

The results were mixed, but the researchers identified a relationship between liking faster, "harder" music and having more sex and doing more drugs. Acoustic indie rock aficionados weren't getting quite as wild as heavy metal fans. High-tempo-music lovers were more likely to have taken hallucinogenic drugs like LSD, for example, and tended to have had more sexual partners in the previous year than people who favored slower types of music. According to the study, previous research has found that attention-seeking people are more likely to enjoy "hard" music.

The study didn't have a diverse enough group either in age or in ethnicity to really begin to make sweeping generalizations about humans, especially since college students (the participants were between 18 and 25) tend to engage in more risky behaviors in general. But this could lay the groundwork for future research into the topic. Until then, it might be more accurate to change the phrase to "sex, drugs, and heavy metal."

[h/t PsyPost]

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