How to Stop Hiccups When Drunk

Discover effective tips to stop hiccups when drunk. From quick remedies to relaxation techniques, bid those hiccups farewell!

Understanding Hiccups When Drunk

Hiccups can be an unexpected and bothersome occurrence, especially when you're enjoying a few drinks. Understanding the causes and symptoms of hiccups when drunk can help you find effective ways to stop them.

What Causes Hiccups When Drunk?

Hiccups occur when the diaphragm, a muscle responsible for breathing, contracts involuntarily. When you consume alcohol, it can irritate the nerves that control the diaphragm, leading to hiccups. The exact mechanism behind alcohol-induced hiccups is not fully understood, but it is believed to involve the effect of alcohol on the central nervous system.

In addition to alcohol, other factors may contribute to hiccups when drunk. These include:

  • Carbonation: Consuming carbonated alcoholic beverages can increase the likelihood of hiccups due to the gas bubbles irritating the diaphragm.
  • Overeating or Rapid Eating: Consuming large amounts of food or eating quickly while drinking can cause the stomach to expand, putting pressure on the diaphragm and triggering hiccups.

Common Symptoms and Duration

Hiccups when drunk typically present with the same symptoms as regular hiccups. These include a sudden and involuntary contraction of the diaphragm followed by a quick closing of the vocal cords, resulting in the characteristic "hic" sound. Other symptoms may include a brief interruption in breathing and a feeling of discomfort.

The duration of hiccups can vary from person to person. In most cases, hiccups are short-lived and resolve on their own within a few minutes. However, in some instances, hiccups can persist for a longer period, even when drunk. Chronic hiccups that last for more than 48 hours may require medical attention.

Understanding the causes and symptoms of hiccups when drunk is the first step in finding effective ways to stop them. In the following sections, we will explore various remedies and techniques that can help alleviate hiccups quickly and safely.

Quick Remedies to Stop Hiccups

When faced with the annoyance of hiccups, especially when under the influence of alcohol, it's natural to seek immediate relief. Fortunately, there are several quick remedies that may help stop hiccups in their tracks. In this section, we'll explore three popular methods: holding your breath, drinking water upside down, and swallowing a spoonful of granulated sugar.

Holding Your Breath

One of the simplest and most common methods to stop hiccups is by holding your breath. This technique involves taking a deep breath and holding it for as long as possible before exhaling slowly. By doing so, you increase the carbon dioxide levels in your body, which can help relax the diaphragm and interrupt the hiccup cycle.

To try this remedy, follow these steps:

  1. Take a deep breath through your nose.
  2. Hold your breath for as long as you comfortably can.
  3. Exhale slowly through your mouth.

Repeat this process a couple of times if necessary until the hiccups subside.

Drinking Water Upside Down

While it may sound unconventional, drinking water upside down is another method that some people find effective in stopping hiccups. This technique requires you to bend forward at the waist and drink a glass of water from the opposite side of the rim (i.e., the side farthest from your mouth).

To attempt this remedy, follow these steps:

  1. Fill a glass with water.
  2. Bend forward at the waist, positioning your head near your knees.
  3. Take small sips of water from the opposite side of the glass, leaning your head away from the rim.

Drinking water in this manner can help stimulate the muscles involved in swallowing and potentially disrupt the hiccup reflex.

Swallowing a Spoonful of Granulated Sugar

Swallowing a spoonful of granulated sugar is another remedy that some individuals swear by to halt hiccups. This method is believed to work by stimulating the vagus nerve, which runs from the brain to the abdomen and plays a role in controlling involuntary bodily functions.

To try this remedy, follow these steps:

  1. Take a spoonful of granulated sugar.
  2. Place the sugar on your tongue.
  3. Swallow it without chewing.

While the scientific evidence supporting the effectiveness of this method is limited, it may be worth a try if you find yourself in need of a quick hiccup remedy.

Remember that these quick remedies may not work for everyone, as the effectiveness of hiccup remedies can vary from person to person. If your hiccups persist or become chronic, it's advisable to consult a healthcare professional for further evaluation and guidance.

Home Remedies for Hiccups

When you're dealing with hiccups after drinking, it can be frustrating and uncomfortable. Fortunately, there are several home remedies that may help alleviate those pesky hiccups. Let's explore three effective options: sipping cold water, gargling with cold water, and biting on a lemon.

Sipping Cold Water

Sipping cold water is a simple and commonly recommended remedy for hiccups. The cold temperature can help stimulate the vagus nerve, which plays a role in controlling the diaphragm muscle responsible for hiccups. By sipping the water slowly, you can interrupt the hiccup reflex and potentially stop the hiccups.

For best results, try taking small sips of ice-cold water. You can also try adding a squeeze of lemon or a few drops of bitters to enhance the effectiveness.

Gargling with Cold Water

Gargling with cold water is another effective technique to help stop hiccups. The act of gargling requires coordination of the muscles in the throat and mouth, which can help interrupt the hiccup reflex. The cold temperature of the water can provide an additional soothing effect.

To try this remedy, take a small sip of cold water and tilt your head back slightly. Gargle the water in your throat for a few seconds before spitting it out. Repeat this process a few times until the hiccups subside.

Biting on a Lemon

Biting on a lemon may seem unusual, but it can be an effective remedy for hiccups. The sour taste of lemon can stimulate the taste buds and activate the nerves responsible for controlling the diaphragm muscle. By doing so, it can help halt the hiccup reflex.

To try this remedy, take a small wedge of lemon and bite into it, allowing the juice to stimulate your taste buds. You can either swallow the juice or spit it out, whichever is more comfortable for you. Remember to rinse your mouth afterward to prevent any potential acidity-related issues.

These home remedies for hiccups can be effective for many individuals. However, if your hiccups persist or are causing significant discomfort, it's recommended to consult a healthcare professional. They can provide further guidance and suggest alternative solutions. Remember to always drink alcohol responsibly and consider implementing preventive measures to avoid hiccups when drinking.

Relaxation Techniques

When hiccups strike while inebriated, relaxation techniques can be effective in stopping them. By calming the body and mind, these techniques help interrupt the hiccup cycle and restore normal breathing. Here are three relaxation techniques that can help alleviate hiccups when drunk:

Deep Breathing Exercises

Deep breathing exercises are a simple yet powerful technique to control hiccups. By focusing on your breath, you can regulate your diaphragm and reduce the spasms causing the hiccups. Follow these steps to perform deep breathing exercises:

  1. Find a comfortable position and sit up straight.
  2. Close your eyes and take a slow, deep breath in through your nose, counting to four.
  3. Hold your breath for a moment, then slowly exhale through your mouth, counting to four.
  4. Repeat this deep breathing pattern several times, allowing your body and mind to relax.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

Progressive muscle relaxation is a technique that involves systematically tensing and then relaxing different muscle groups in the body. This relaxation method helps release tension and promotes overall relaxation, which can aid in stopping hiccups. Follow these steps to practice progressive muscle relaxation:

  1. Find a quiet and comfortable space to sit or lie down.
  2. Start by tensing the muscles in your feet, holding the tension for a few seconds, and then release.
  3. Gradually work your way up through the different muscle groups in your body, tensing and relaxing each one.
  4. Pay close attention to the sensation of relaxation as you release the tension in each muscle group.

Distraction Techniques

Distraction techniques can be effective in stopping hiccups by diverting your focus away from the hiccup reflex. By engaging your mind in a different activity, you can interrupt the hiccup cycle and reduce their occurrence. Here are a few distraction techniques you can try:

  • Solve a puzzle or engage in a mentally stimulating activity, such as counting backward from 100 in increments of three.
  • Engage in a conversation with someone or listen to an engaging podcast.
  • Perform a simple task that requires concentration, such as tying a knot or folding a piece of paper.

By practicing these relaxation techniques, you may find relief from hiccups when drunk.

Prevention Tips to Avoid Hiccups When Drinking

While hiccups when drunk can be an annoying and disruptive experience, there are several preventive measures you can take to minimize their occurrence. By following these tips, you can enjoy your drinks without the interruption of hiccups.

Moderating Alcohol Consumption

One of the primary causes of hiccups when drunk is the excessive consumption of alcohol. Moderating your alcohol intake can help reduce the likelihood of hiccups. Pace yourself and avoid consuming alcohol too quickly, as this can increase the chances of hiccups occurring. It's important to be mindful of your alcohol tolerance and limit your consumption accordingly.

Eating Before and During Drinking

Eating a meal before consuming alcohol can help prevent hiccups. Having food in your stomach can help slow down the absorption of alcohol into your bloodstream, reducing the risk of hiccups. Additionally, snacking on light foods throughout the drinking session can help maintain a steady blood sugar level, which may help prevent hiccups.

Avoiding Carbonated Drinks

Carbonated beverages can contribute to hiccups when drunk. The carbonation in these drinks can cause excess gas to build up in the stomach, leading to hiccups. To minimize the chances of hiccups, opt for non-carbonated beverages or dilute carbonated drinks with plain water. This can help reduce the carbonation and lower the likelihood of hiccups occurring.

Incorporating these preventive tips into your drinking routine can significantly reduce the occurrence of hiccups when drunk. Remember to drink responsibly, stay hydrated, and be mindful of your alcohol consumption.


By practicing these relaxation techniques and incorporating preventive measures into your drinking routine, you can minimize the likelihood of hiccups when drunk. However, if you do experience hiccups, there are several quick remedies and home remedies that you can try to alleviate them. Remember to consult a healthcare professional if your hiccups persist or become chronic. With these tips, you can enjoy your drinks without the annoyance of hiccups.


Lacey has worked for over a decade as a writer, in conjunction with having worked around the world in poor social and economic living conditions to provide sustainability programs through numerous non-profits. Her efforts focus on making a difference in people's lives one small step at a time.