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Parenting Tip of the Day: Feb. 21

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Does your little one frequently have hiccups? Don’t discount stress as the underlying cause. “Anxiety may cause muscle spasms, including spasms of the diaphragm,” wrote Brenna Davis in Livestrong.com. “Recurring hiccups may be a sign of underlying emotional distress. If your child has recently experienced a major life change such as a parent’s divorce, change in school or death of a loved one, the hiccups may be a result of tension and fear.”

After you figure out the cause of hiccups, take all food away until they stop. “The biggest risk posed by hiccups is choking,” said Davis. “Young children are at an especially high risk of choking during a diaphragm spasm, so children experiencing hiccups should stop eating until the hiccups go away.”

Remember: Although hiccups are usually just an annoyance and nothing serious, if your child has several extended hiccup sessions every day for more than a week, it is best to contact your pediatrician.

Related: Unhealthy Kids ‘Make Me Sad’

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