Isn’t it annoying when you get that urge to sneeze, but all of a sudden, it’s gone? We all know how frustrating it can get when you badly need to sneeze but fail to do so. Holding your sneeze can be dangerous. So you need to try it. But how to make yourself sneeze?
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Sneezing is a natural way of removing irritants such as dirt, viruses, allergens and the like trapped inside your nasal passages. The medical term for sneezing in sternutation. It usually happens suddenly and is quite sturdy.
Any foreign body that enters our noses is filtered and trapped by the mucus found in nasal passages. More often than not, the slime that contains the said foreign body moves down to the stomach where the stomach acids will neutralize them.
If the foreign body such as an irritant irritates the mucous membranes found in your nose and throat, it stimulates your trigeminal nerve, triggering the need to sneeze.
Why Do We Sneeze?
Here’s a SciShow episode that quickly answer the question. Please watch it here.
What Makes You Sneeze?
Here are the things that make you sneeze:
• Use a cotton bud or a tissue rolled on the side to make a pointy tip and wiggle it around one nostril. The tickling sensation will stimulate sneezing.
• Get a fake feather and brush it under your nose to induce sneezing. Do not attempt to use a real feather and never insert that into your nose
• Sniff a strong spice such as pepper, hot cayenne pepper, cumin and coriander. These spices can irritate your nose quickly, so if you’re looking for a way on how to sneeze in command, do sniff a spice.
• Look at a bright light. Some people have a hereditary condition named Photic sneezing and can sneeze just be looking directly at a bright light source such as the sun and a bright light bulb.
• Help yourself with some chocolates. It works for people with Photic Sneezing Reflex
• Take a whiff of strong perfume or any essential oil. The strong smell is enough to trigger a sneeze.
• Plucking an eyebrow hair or nose hair irritates the trigeminal and facial nerves resulting in a sneeze
• Chew a strong mint gum. The sudden mint smell can help relieve that urge to sneeze
• Lean back when you feel the slow urge to sneeze. When your head is in a preceding position, the flow of are scan stimulate sternutation
• Drink fizzy drinks. The carbon dioxide found in carbonated beverages tickles your nostrils and will give you the urge to let out a sneeze
• Fake it. Faking a sneeze constantly uses the same muscle used to sneeze and can trigger a real sneeze for you.
• Go somewhere cold. The sudden cold air stimulates your trigeminal nerve which is all you need to sneeze. Turn your AC up, breath in cold air from the freezer or breathe outside if the temperature is low. You can also try touching something cold.
• Squeeze and shake your nose gently. It will shake your nasal membranes up and can help trigger that much awaited sneeze.
• Use the tip of your tongue and lick the roof of your mouth and the trigeminal nerve found in that area will stimulate a sneeze.
Frequently Ask Questions About Sneeze
Why Does the Sun Make You Sneeze?
Researchers suspect that two important reflexes may play a key role in sun sneezing. The first is the pupillary light reflex. In this reflex, bright light entering the eyes sends signals along the optic nerve to the brain, which sends signals back to the eyes to constrict the pupils—a means of adjusting to differently lit environments. The second is the sneeze reflex, in which a cranial nerve called the trigeminal nerve detects a tickling in the nose and alerts the brain, which in turn stimulates the chest, nose, mouth and other muscles involved in sneezing. (Source: ScienceLine)
Why Does Pepper Make You Sneeze?
Pepper contains an alkaloid of pyridine called piperine that acts as an irritant if it gets into the nose. It stimulates (or irritates) the nerve endings inside the mucous membrane. This stimulation will cause you to sneeze.