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Reasons Why a Baby Hiccups

“Are hiccups in babies Normal?”

“My baby gets frequent hiccups”.

“Why does my baby hiccup after feeding?”

“How do I stop my baby’s hiccups?”

We all experience hiccups several times in our whole life. Baby hiccups are also absolutely normal thing and are observed in all newborn babies. It is nothing to be alarmed about. In fact, hiccups can even occur while the baby is in the mommy’s womb.

In maximum cases, babies have hiccups after a feed. Hiccups occur frequently in babies who are under six months old and might last for a minute or even an hour. In accordance to doctors, hiccups are basically caused because of repetitive contractions of the diaphragm and also because the organs of an infant are immature and require some time to develop. And as the baby grows, organs start to develop and the frequency of hiccups is decreased.


The main reasons for hiccups in babies or contraction of the diaphragm

  1. Sudden Temperature Change: Babies respond to sudden temperature change very quickly. When babies are exposed to extreme cold, they start to hiccups.
  2. After a Feed: While being fed, sometimes babies suck lots of air along with milk. This excess air makes the diaphragm to contract which results in hiccups.
  3. Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease: This is known as acid reflux and this happens when the acid from baby’s tummy is released repeatedly from the esophagus. This is also common in toddlers. Although hiccups are absolutely normal, the baby might feel frustrated and required to be distracted to reduce the frustration.
  4. Overfeeding: Over feeding the baby with formula or breast milk can make the baby’s tummy to bloat. The abdominal cavity expands suddenly and this makes the diaphragm stretch and causes spasms, which lead to hiccups in babies.
  5. Allergic Reactions: An allergic reaction to certain foods such as proteins present in the formula milk or certain foods consumed by the mother can also lead to inflammation of the food pipe and this can trigger hiccups in the baby.

5 Ways to Get Rid of Hiccups in Babies

  1. Burp after every feed: Babies have hiccups when they swallow excess air and to cure this, parents should burp their baby after every feed.
  2. The nipple of the feeding bottle matters: The size of the nipple of the baby’s feeding bottle should be chosen wisely. If the size of the nipple is too big, the baby will suck extra air while feeding which will cause hiccups. The nipple should release steady drops of milk when turned upside down.
  3. Give Sugar: Babies on a solid diet can be given sugar to stop hiccups. The sweetness of sugar distracts the nerves and makes them stop contracting.
  4. Pause the feed: If baby hiccups occur while feeding, then feed should be paused and it is suggested to pat on the baby’s back to stop hiccups.

Avoid Over Feeding: This is the main reason for hiccups in babies. Parents should try reducing the feed to check if hiccups are being caused due to overfeeding.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed/shared in the blog above are personal opinions of the writer. Berrytree recommends you consult with your doctor/pediatrician/family before instinctively following any suggested steps


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