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Achoo! And achoo again! But why and what for?

Blog | By Raymond Briggs | Apr 25, 2017


            

             Sneezing. Now, what is sneezing FOR? Most of the other things our body does to us, without our consent, such as coughing, groaning, gasping, sighing, and yawning, serve some practical purpose. Though I am not sure what yawning is for, unless it is a warning shot across the bows to the bore who is talking to us.

            The short, two or three, quick, light sneezes, which everyone does, must be due to some minor irritation, but what causes both me and my friend Sue to have sneezing FITS? Anything from eight to more than twenty, and these are violent convulsive sneezes, involving the whole body. If sitting, my feet leave the floor and stamp down again, body is bent forward, eyes are streaming and light on the eyes is unbearable. By the end, I am left gasping and exhausted.

            More than once, I've been measuring my blood pressure at the time, and the pulse rate goes through the roof. I have to sit still and try to do some yoga breathing until it all calms down.

            Oddly, these fits always occur at about 9pm, no matter what room I am in, what I have been eating or what season of the year it is. My friend Sue says hers are exactly the same, and also at about 9 pm.

            What on earth can time have to do with it?

RAYMOND BRIGGS.