Islamic Way of Living: Manners of Sneezing and Yawning


Sneezing in Islam is considered to be a sign of health as sneezing removes germs from the body, while yawning a sign of laziness.That is why Allah likes sneezing but dislikes yawning.

1. When a person sneezes, he should say:

-الْحَمْـدُ للهِ

“All praise is for Allah.”

2. The person who hears someone sneezing and saying Alhumdolillah, should reply by saying:

-يَرْحَمُـكَ الله

“May Allah have mercy upon you”

3. The first person who had sneezed in the first place on hearing this reply should answer as:

-يَهْـديكُـمُ اللهُ وَيُصْـلِحُ بالَـكُم

“May Allah guide you and rectify your condition.”
(Bukhari 6224, Tirmazi 2739)

This whole process should be repeated three times at the most. If the person sneezes for the fourth time, then it’s a sign of cold not health.It’s is not necessary to reply him even if he says Alhumdolillah. Cover your mouth and nose with a handkerchief if possible.

4. Narrated Al-Bara:

The Prophet ordered us to do seven (things) and forbade us from seven (other things): He ordered us to pay a visit to the sick, to follow funeral possessions, to say: -يَرْحَمُـكَ الله (May Allah be merciful to you) to a sneezer, – if he says: الْحَمْـدُ للهِ (Praise be to Allah), to accept invitation (invitation to a wedding banquet), to return greetings, to help the oppressed, and to help others to fulfill their oaths (provided it was not sinful). And he forbade us (Muslim Men)from seven (things): to wear golden rings or golden bangles, to wear silk (cloth), Dibaj, Sundus and Mayathir.

(Bukhari 241/73)

5. Narrated Abu Huraira:

The Prophet said, “Allah likes sneezing and dislikes yawning, so if someone sneezes and then praises Allah, then it is obligatory on every Muslim who heard him, to say: May Allah be merciful to you (Yar-hamuka-l-lah). But as regards yawning, it is from Satan, so one must try one’s best to stop it, if one says ‘Ha’ when yawning, Satan will laugh at him.”

(Bukhari 242/73)

As yawning is disliked by Allah, we have been told to suppress it as much as possible. Use your left hand to cover your mouth and avoid at all costs to create a yawning sound.