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Australian Hiccup Remedy Gets Attention

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Q. Here is a remedy for hiccups we learned from an Australian friend. Press a penny on the hiccuper’s forehead while the person takes a breath and holds it for ten to twenty seconds.

Over the years I’ve tried this remedy about six times and it’s worked every time.

A. We have not encountered this Australian hiccup remedy before, but it could be worth a try. Other simple approaches include swallowing a spoonful of granulated sugar, drinking water from the far side of the glass and drinking water while someone stands behind you and presses on your ear flaps (tragus).

One reader reported: “I have been a bartender for almost 30 years. I found the lemon, bitters and sugar (yes, all three) in the mid 90s and it has worked on every single person but one. That’s a 99 percent cure rate.

“Here’s another: Stand up, bend over and drink a glass of water from the other side. This has about a 75 percent cure rate, but it’s much more fun to watch!”

Another reader recently shared this one:

Years ago while eating in a restaurant I started hiccupping badly. I asked the bartender for his suggestion and he gave me a slice of lime with a few drops of Angostura bitters. I sucked on the lime as instructed and the hiccups stopped immediately.”

And, of course, there is always chocolate. There are even more hiccup remedies in our book, The People’s Pharmacy Quick & Handy Home Remedies.

“I hate hiccups, so since then I have always kept a fresh lime and a bottle of bitters on hand. This remedy has never failed me. I have tried the lime alone and the bitters alone–neither worked but the combination works like magic.”



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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
The People’s Pharmacy Quick and Handy Home Remedies

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The People’s Pharmacy Quick and Handy Home Remedies
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Few sips of pickle juice straight out of the jar is my home remedy for hiccups. Not sure why but it works every time.

My favorite remedy is to take a deep breath, then hum slowly as you exhale.

try the penny and breath holding … only without the penny. don’t move AT ALL while holding the breath and this technique will work 90% of the time, too.

My brother’s remedy works every time. Stand up, raise your hands high over your head and breathe slowly and deeply for 20-30 seconds. I think it allows the diaphragm to relax.

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