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By Katherine Kiang
KaTsZoNe Newsletters > KaTsZoNe - Issue 129 - Hiccups

8 Apr 2016

Hi everyone,

I hope April is going well for all of you so far.  In Toronto, we were surprised to see more snow in the first few days of April than in January and February.  I'm glad the snow melted rather quickly.  We are getting snow and rain, but, we are certainly optimistic that warmer weather is coming. 

In March, I enjoyed the Prospectors, Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) annual mining convention in Toronto and especially meeting up with friends.  As a member of PDAC, I receive news about the mining industry in Canada, but, as an investor, I enjoy connecting with fellow investors and people who work in the industry.  Twitter, corporate e-mails, news sources, Facebook keep me on my toes and I love it! 

As many of you may know, I am not just into mining!  Larry and I attended the Canadian International AutoShow in Toronto in February.  This coming weekend in April, we are planning to attend the Spring Motorcycle Show at the International Centre in Brampton.  Interestingly, cars and motorcycles are made of metals - well, mining and metals.  As my friend, Irene, would say, I am like a crow, I like shiny things!  That is so true! 

So, just jumping into the topic of this episode of KaTsZoNe which came to me when recently, I had several hiccups over the course of 24 hours.  I began to wonder why I got them in the first place.  For me, it seemed unusual to have at least 3 to 4 episodes of hiccups in one day.

I have never asked myself how hiccups occur until now.  Hiccups can occur at any age.  Can you believe that even a fetus can get hiccups in the mother's womb?  There's no way to anticipate it.  They seem to come and go for no apparent reason and yet, there are some possible causes. 

Common causes of  short-term hiccups may include:  overeating, eating spicy foods, consuming alcohol, drinking carbonated beverages like sodas, consuming very hot or very cold foods, a sudden change in air temperature, swallowing air while chewing gum, excitement or emotional stress, aerophagia (swallowing too much air).  Episodes of short-term hiccups can last only a few minutes.

Some people experience long-term hiccups that last more than 48 hours due to a number of medical conditions, the overuse of alcohol, tobacco, or taking certain classes of drugs, including barbiturates, steroids and tranquilizers.

In most cases, there is no need to call for medical attention when you have a case of temporary hiccups.  I'm sure we have remedies we've tried.  Drinking a glass of cold water will usually cure me, as well as holding my breath.  I have tried eating a teaspoon of sugar.  Larry has suggested breathing into a paper bag -- hopefully, last night's take-out dinner still smells good.  
Some people suggest scaring a person with hiccups -- that might be a good idea, as long as the person with hiccups is not about to set something on fire or carrying something breakable in his/her arms.  That idea could work based on the remedy which is to purposefully gasp.  There are several other remedies which many of you may know of and have tried.

I find hiccups to be one of the oddest phenomena that happens in the human body.  It can be annoying at times, yet sometimes, it makes me laugh!  Try speaking when you have hiccups - either you'll laugh or cry.  I can just imagine watching a comedy on tv where all the characters speak with hiccups throughout the entire show - that would make me laugh!  Yet, some of you may shake your head and think, that would be so annoying!

Do you find yourself having hiccups in life which stops you from your plans for a short time?  In most cases, hiccups are a minor interruption.  Perhaps, you are a teen on a hockey team which has lost several games.  That could annoy or disappoint you, but, your team picks up momentum and wins the rest of the season.  Another possible hiccup in life could occur when you are not accepted in a particular program at the college of your choice because of cuts in funding.  You could try a different college or program and find yourself still on track, or perhaps find yourself in a different course which turns out to be the better choice for your life.

What if you were engaged to someone and broke off the engagement.  That may be a big hiccup in your love life.  But, some time later, you meet someone else and get married.  That hiccup may have been a big disappointment which broke your heart at the time, but, you've realized that it happened for a reason and you are happier now.   

Can we avoid hiccups in life which can throw us for a loop temporarily or long-term?  Let's first take a look at how to reduce our susceptibility to physical hiccups.  Some suggestions:

Don't overeat; avoid carbonated beverages; protect yourself from sudden temperature changes;
avoid drinking alcohol; remain calm and try to avoid intense emotional or physical reactions.

I think those remedies listed for actual hiccups can help in life.  For example, if we don't overeat and avoid alcohol, we could eliminate a lot of physical and social problems which can lead to long-term problematic hiccups in life.  If we learned to be calm and not to be too emotional and physically react in most situations, we could avoid hurting ourselves and people who are important to us.

I wish we can find a remedy to all of life's hiccups.  We can either be annoyed and sad or we can laugh about them.  I hope we can laugh more often.  No doubt, hiccups can be full of surprises.  Let's just sit back, relax, take some deep breaths, and try to experience and enjoy life as fully as possible. Hic...hic... Until next time...back in June!

Peace and blessings.


Comments Anyone?: 

Ref. What Causes Hiccups? 13 Possible Conditions, By Anna Giorgi, Medically reviewed on September 26, 2015 by Steven Kim, MD, www.healthline.com/symptom/hiccups