Does your heart actually stop when you sneeze?

Speaking of which, you’ll never believe what can make you sneeze

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Have you ever heard someone say that your heart stops for a moment every time you sneeze?

Whew, if that were the case, allergy season might be a tad bit scarier, and you'd probably now have a lot of lucky years under your belt of surviving potentially "life-threatening sneezes."

So, to cut straight to the chase, your heart doesn’t actually stop when you sneeze. However, the act of sneezing does do something.

When you sneeze, reflexes are triggered, along with pressure changes to the airway, said Dr. Frank McGeorge.

We’re happy to tell you though -- your heart definitely does not stop.

In general, sneezing is our body’s way of clearing the nose of bacteria and viruses.

Aside from the important process sneezing accomplishes for the immune system, there are other things that can cause us to sneeze.

For starters, you’re not crazy: The sunshine really can make you sneeze. It's called photic sneezing, according to McGeorge, and it happens when you go from the inside to the outside. There are a few theories as to why this happens. One says nerves that bring in light aren't far from ones that cause you to sneeze. Another says that sudden exposure to bright light can cause changes in the tear ducts, which also stimulate a sneeze. Either way, you can blame this one on your relatives, as light sensitivity is said to be an inherited trait.


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