Do you need help with how to stop baby hiccups? Take some time to read about treating baby hiccups here in this brief overview.
We’re willing to bet that you can’t remember the first time you had the hiccups. Odds are good that you were a teeny, tiny baby with a case of teeny, tiny newborn hiccups!
While adorable, one mighty contraction of the diaphragm is enough to shake a baby’s entire body—and that can’t be comfortable! It can also be scary for new parents who don’t know what is happening.
Whether you findyour little one’s hiccups cute or calamitous, you have one mission: learning how to stop baby hiccups in their tracks.
At Hiccupops, we know a thing or two about the science behind the humble hiccup. We’ve used that information to develop our science-based hiccup solution for adults. While our Hiccupops aren’t ideal for the littlest hiccupers, we want to help their families vanquish those obnoxious contractions as quickly as possible.
After all, a tendency toward developing hiccups sometimes runs in the family! Ready to rid your pint-sized friend of their persistent little problem? Read on to learn all about how to stop hiccups in babies!
What Are Hiccups, Anyway?
A hiccup is a reflex, and every reflex is your body’s attempt to protect you. For example, you reflexively flinch when you touch something hot or sharp. You sneeze when your nasal passages become irritated.
Your body is more likely to respond with an involuntary hiccup due to stress or diet changes. Overeating, eating quickly, or eating spicy foods are frequently the culprits! These behaviors can irritate finicky nerves in the abdomen, throat, or mouth.
We often see tipsy characters hiccuping in cartoons. Both carbonation and alcohol can contribute to hiccuping. They create a subtle shift in your breathing pattern, which is enough to signal to your brain that something might be wrong.
Sometimes sudden anxiety or stress triggers the reflex. In some folks, hiccups tend to show up out of the blue!
You might not notice that your breathing has changed, but it’s your brain’s job to pay attention! In response, your diaphragm contracts, sending a rush of air toward the back of your throat. The air triggers your glottis, near your vocal cords, to slam shut.
Thus, your chest and abdomen shake, and you involuntarily produce a loud and distinctive “hic!” sound. Think of it as a spasm of the diaphragm.
Babies and Hiccups
Babies are brand new people. Their brains and bodies know how to function, but much of their behavior begins with survival reflexes. For example, if you touch a newborn baby’s cheek, they will turn their head and mouth in that direction, anticipating some delicious milk.
As babies grow, they begin outgrowing some of their reflexes, and they have to learn to compensate. There is a pretty big learning curve involved!
Luckily, many reflexes (such as the hiccuping reflex) remain to keep our babies safe. The slightest hitch in breathing or swallowing can be enough to trigger the hiccup response in an infant. Their new digestive systems are sensitive, so even the slightest irritation will set those hiccups in motion!
Common causes of hiccups in babies include:
- Excess air in the stomach
- Any disruption in their breathing pattern
- Over-consuming milk or formula
- Feeding too quickly
- Just because (it’s a mystery!)
Think of your baby as a self-preservation machine. Every reflex is there to help keep them safe. Sometimes reflexes will misfire, and something as innocuous as a giggle fit can result in an afternoon of hiccupping!
With that in mind, it can be helpful for parents to recognize that hiccups aren’t usually a sign that something is wrong. More often than not, they’re a sign that something is right! Your baby’s sharp little brain is firing on all cylinders, working overtime to try and keep your little one safe!
With that said, hiccups shouldn’t cause excessive discomfort or vomiting. If they seem especially frequent or don’t seem to stop, consult with a pediatrician. Trust your gut and seek out help if you need it!
How to Stop Baby Hiccups
The truth? Baby hiccups are often more uncomfortable for the parents than for the baby! They might be loud and dramatic, but most babies don’t notice them!
Most babies will go on playing, babbling, eating, or relaxing, even with a noisy “hic!” emerging from their bodies every few seconds. After all, babies don’t know how to be self-conscious yet! It isn’t like hiccups can interrupt a newborn’s conversation!
Most parents seeking to get rid of hiccups in their baby are projecting. Hiccups might be uncomfortable, socially awkward, or annoying for you. That doesn’t mean that your sweet, oblivious baby shares that opinion!
The best advice from pediatricians is to let the hiccups run their course. Given time, your baby’s diaphragm will relax, stopping the hiccups. It might be a noisy few minutes, but you will both survive!
It’s hard to sit back and do nothing while your baby is squawking like a noisy little chicken! It’s natural to want to do something for your baby, even if you don’t necessarily have to. Here are a few things to try if you feel helpless and want to end those baby hiccups fast.
Notice Hunger Cues
You and your baby are still learning about one another. By now, you might be able to decode each of their distinctive cries. If you want to prevent hiccups, start honing in on your baby’s hunger cues.
Once you know when your baby is getting hungry, you can respond. If your baby gets too hungry, they are more likely to eat too quickly. Feeding them earlier decreases the odds of your baby swallowing excess air.
Burp Baby Frequently
While feeding, stop after every few ounces and give your baby a chance to burp. It’s the easiest way to eject excess air from the stomach as your baby eats. If air doesn’t build-up, it’s less likely to trigger hiccups after a feeding.
Reposition the Nipple
Some feeding positions result in your baby swallowing more air, even if they’re eating at a polite pace. Reposition the nipple to ensure that your baby takes in as little air as possible. You can also buy special nipples designed to help.
Try a Pacifier
If your baby does get hiccups, try offering them a pacifier. It’s often enough to reset their breathing patterns. Plus, it’s soothing!
Rub Their Back
Rocking your baby or rubbing their back can also help encourage hiccups to vanish quickly. Repositioning your baby is sometimes enough to do the trick! Any little shift can be enough to reset your baby’s sense of equilibrium and stop the reflex in its tracks.
What Not to Do When Your Baby Has Hiccups
Baby bodies and adult bodies are not the same! Just because you have a favorite hiccup remedy (such as Hiccupops, of course) doesn’t mean it will work on your infant. Most of the “quick fixes” you hear about aren’t appropriate for young children.
Here are the techniques to avoid when your baby is prone to hiccups. Knowing whatnot to do can help keep your baby equally safe!
Avoid Water Remedies
Many adults believe that drinking a glass of water in a particular way will help rid them of hiccups. While your baby might enjoy some water on a hot day, it’s unlikely to impact this reflex. It might cause more air to collect in their belly, leading to more hiccups!
Avoid Peanut Butter Remedies
Peanut butter is on the list of major food allergens. You shouldn’t offer your baby any foods on that list until you know they aren’t allergic. You also shouldn’t feed your baby peanut butter if they aren’t yet eating solids.
There is no scientific link between hiccups and peanut butter in babies or adults.
Avoid Sugar Remedies
In general, giving sugar to a baby is a bad idea. It can harm their soft, developing teeth. There is no scientific evidence that it has any effect on hiccups.
Avoid Gripe Water Remedies
Gripe water is a supplement. The FDA does not regulate any substance considered a supplement. Furthermore, there is no scientific proof that gripe water affects hiccups.
Get Rid of Hiccups at (Almost) Any Age With Hiccupops
Our science-based solution for hiccups isn’t for hiccupers under five, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep a few on hand! You’ll be well-equipped to figure out how to stop baby hiccups when you can quickly and easily manage your own! Consume one pop as needed to conquer your occasional hiccups, then enjoy uninterrupted bonding time with your precious baby.
Don’t have any on hand? Visit our shop and fill your cart with Hiccupops in Original Citrus or Sour Apple flavors. You can even sign up for a subscription to keep that sweet relief coming to your doorstep month after month!