While admittedly embarrassing, hiccups typically go away spontaneously in a matter of hours. However, strange sounds like hiccups, ringing ears, whistling nose, and popping joints, are signs our bodies send in order to show there is something wrong going on. These unpleasant sounds are the way our bodies communicate with us.
Even though they are harmless in most cases, in case they are persistent, you should seek medical attention and get checked out.
Any blockage of the normal breathing causes the diaphragm to contract and cause hiccups. They are basically caused by irritation of the vagus nerves or phrenic nerves, which serve the diaphragm muscle. This irritation is typically triggered by excitement, heavy meal, or certain medications.
Given that larger amounts of carbon dioxide relaxes the diaphragm, holding the breath for a while usually helps stop the hiccups. However, if they persist for more than 48 hours, seek medical attention. Sometimes they may be a sign of stroke, so never take them for granted, especially if they are combined with shortness of breath and pain.
Slight ringing in the ears usually occurs when you are listening loud noises over an extended period of time or when going to a music concert, which is completely normal. But, if this sensation happens more frequently, it is very likely that it`s a sign of tinnitus.
Tinnitus is may be caused by an ear infection or ear damage, but in some cases it`s a normal sign of aging. Normally, the ears send signs to the brain as soon as they receive them, but in case of tinnitus, these signals are being sent all the time. Make sure you consult your doctor as early as possible, especially if the symptom is combined with pain or vertigo.
Cracking joints is the act of pulling bones apart to release air bubbles in the joints, which does not cause arthritis. Therefore, contrary to popular belief, cracking the knuckles won`t give you arthritis! While the cause of the common sounds of joint popping is not clear, it is believed that it is caused by stretching of the ligaments or compression of nitrogen bubbles in the spaces between the joints.
It is recommended to consult a doctor if the popping progresses to grinding, as it may be a sign of an early stage of osteoarthritis.
The most likely answer for the whistle sound is a blockage in the airways caused by excess mucus. However, sometimes this unpleasant sound may result from trauma on the nose or tear in the cartilage. If this is the case, see a doctor as soon as possible.