Washington: The way you sneeze can reveal a lot about your personality, a new US study suggests. The way we sneeze reflects certain components of our personality, said Dr Alan Hirsch, a neurologist, psychiatrist and founder of the Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago.

According to Hirsch, he doesn't know of any studies that have been conducted on various sneezing styles and what they might mean. "Sneezes are like laughter. Some (laughs) are loud, some are soft. And its similar with sneezing. It will often be the same from youth onward in terms of what it sounds like," said Hirsch.

"It's more of a psychological thing and represents the underlying personality or character structure," he said. A person who is demonstrative and outgoing, for instance, would most likely have a loud explosive sneeze, whereas someone who's shy might try to withhold their sneezes, resulting in more of a Minnie Mouse-type expulsion.

"In general, sneezing is an involuntary phenomenon, part of the body's mechanism of defence, a way of clearing out bacteria or other agents that would be injurious," said Dr Gordon Siegel, a Chicago-area otolaryngologist.

"That being said, you can control to a degree the way it comes out," Siegel said the shape of our nose or the bone structure of our face might contribute a small degree to certain sneezing styles much in the same way the resonance of our voice is affected by our anatomy.

(Agencies)

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