Try Stimulating Your Vagus Nerve
The vagus nerve is a major nerve in the body that connects the brain with the heart, lungs and gut. There are a variety of ways to stimulate the vagus nerve, which will then react to calm your heart.
You can hum, cough or gag to stimulate the vagus nerve. Stepping under a cold shower or splashing your face with cold water are also stimulating.
Causes Of Heart Palpitations
These occur due to constantly fluctuatinghormone levels. The hormones oestrogen and progesterone are rising andfalling during this time and this change puts a strain upon your body.
This manifests itself as hot flushes,sweating and a pounding heartbeat.
Heart palpitations often occur in thefirst few months of taking HRT.
When Does Menopause Occur
Although the average age of menopause is 51, menopause can actually happen any time from the 30s to the mid-50s or later. Women who smoke and are underweight tend to have an earlier menopause, while women who are overweight often have a later menopause. Generally, a woman tends to have menopause at about the same age as her mother did.
Menopause can also happen for reasons other than natural reasons. These include:
Premature menopause. Premature menopause may happen when there is ovarian failure before the age of 40. It may be associated with smoking, radiation exposure, chemotherapeutic drugs, or surgery that impairs the ovarian blood supply. Premature ovarian failure is also called primary ovarian insufficiency.
Surgical menopause. Surgical menopause may follow the removal of one or both ovaries, or radiation of the pelvis, including the ovaries, in premenopausal women. This results in an abrupt menopause. These women often have more severe menopausal symptoms than if they were to have menopause naturally.
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How Can Palpitations Be Stopped
If your palpitations are linked to the hormone changes of the menopause, taking HRT can be very effective in reducing and preventing them. If you want to consider this treatment for your palpitations, make an appointment with your doctor to discuss this option. Depending on the cause, other things that may help include following a healthy lifestyle by reducing the amount of caffeine in your diet, avoiding stimulants like cigarettes and alcohol, and practising relaxation techniques like yoga and breathing exercises.
If you have palpitations due to other causes, their treatment depends on the cause. If youve a heart rhythm problem, treatment options include medication, cardioversion , a pacemaker, or ablation treatment that destroys the area of heart tissue causing the arrhythmia. Treating the medical condition that is causing palpitations can stop them effectively and quickly.
Could Midlife Heart Palpitations Be A Sign Of A Serious Heart Condition In Women
In many cases, palpitations arent cause for concern and will go away on their own, according to Penn Medicine. However, there are instances where someone with heart palpitations does have an underlying heart condition or discovers underlying heart disease that was previously undiagnosed, says Lewey.
In addition to heart disease, palpitations can also be a sign of an abnormal heart valve, heart attack, heart failure, or cardiomyopathy, according to Penn Medicine. Cardiomyopathy is a collection of different conditions of the heart muscle that can cause the heart muscle to stiffen, thicken, thin out, or fill with substances the body produces that shouldnt be there, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention .
If youre concerned about heart palpitations, its important to talk with your doctor. If heart palpitations come with signs of a cardiac event such as loss of consciousness chest pain difficulty breathing pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw, or stomach nausea or vomiting or lightheadedness you should call 911 and get to a hospital right away, according to the American Heart Association .
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How To Slow The Palpitations
Early research shows that stress, insomnia, and depression may be contributing factors. So, making changes to reduce stress, sleep better, and treat depression may help. Here are some more steps to take at home.
Get a baseline. Find out what your normal pulse rate during exercise and at rest. This will help you calculate how much faster your heart is beating during palpitations. Menopause heart palpitations may increase heart rate by eight to 16 beats per minute a larger increase may indicate a more serious issue.
The easiest way to check your heart rate is with a fitness tracker like a FitBit or Apple watch or a chest strap monitor like Polar. Sometimes an episode can feel worse than it really is and seeing that your heart rate isnt as elevated as it feels can be reassuring. It is also helpful information to share with your doctor.
Limit caffeine. Its stimulant that may contribute to heart palpitations. Remember, coffee isnt the only source of caffeine. Non-herbal teas, including green tea, contain the stimulant. Even decaf teas have a little caffeine. Chocolate, energy drinks, and soda are other sources.
Read drug labels. Over-the-counter medications, such as antihistamines, decongestants, allergy remedies, and diet pills, often contain ingredients that are stimulants, which may affect your heart. If youre taking any of these or any prescription meds and experiencing irregular heartbeats, check with your doctor to find out if they may be related.
Estrogen Levels May Lead To Other Health Effects That Increase Your Risk For Cardiovascular Disease
Low estrogen can also work more insidiously to affect your heart health. Hormone changes can increase your risk for conditions that also increase your risk for cardiovascular risk. For example, low estrogen levels have been linked to increased insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is a risk factor for developing diabetes. Diabetes is another risk factor for heart disease and stroke.
Additionally, estrogen affects how your body distributes fat. Declining estrogen often leads to weight gain and increased visceral fat during menopause. This affects your health in many ways, one of which is putting extra stress on your heart. Therefore, estrogen also has other, more indirect impacts on your heart health. However, estrogen replacement therapy may help reduce these risks and help relieve menopause symptoms.
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When To See Your Doctor
There are some times when it is smart to make an appointment with your doctor right away if you are experiencing heart palpitations.
If the arrhythmias increase in frequency or severity, if you start experiencing headaches during arrhythmia episodes, if you start to feel dizzy or faint or experience chest pain or pressure, you should immediately schedule an appointment with your doctor.
Menopause heart palpitations should always be taken seriously, as should any change in your heart function. Menopause is a time of systemic change and it is important to take extra-good care of yourself and seek professional guidance as needed.
What Other Problems To Consider When Having Heart Palpitations During Menopause
Heart palpitations in menopause last for several months and then go away. They are not sign of a heart disease. But, if the palpitations last longer than that and are more frequent, seeking a doctors advice is necessary because they might be sign of serious diseases.
Hyperthyroidism is a state that can cause heart palpitations because of the increased effects of adrenaline caused by the excess levels of thyroid hormones . A simple blood test to measure levels of TSH will clear the diagnosis.
When palpitations happen on a recurring basis and are associated with light-headedness or shortness of breath may be a sign of a heart disease.
The tests that can be done to diagnose the underlying disease are:
· an ECG,
· a cardiac-ultrasound ,
· a stress echocardiogram is a very accurate method of diagnosing heart problems in women with heart palpitations and menopause.
If the tests show no sign of heart diseases, then the palpitations are safe to consider menopausal symptoms. If there is an organic affection of the heart, which causes these palpitations, then the treatment must be started immediately according to the underlying disease.
Are Heart Palpitations A Precursor To Heart Disease
According to the Mayo Clinic, heart palpitations are usually harmless, though they can be surprising or even alarming to experience. As mentioned, occasionally, there can be a more serious, underlying cause. But heart palpitations on their own arent usually dangerous.
Heart disease, however, is another subject.
- Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States, killing 299,578 women in 2017-or about 1 in every 5 female deaths.
- Heart disease is the leading cause of death for African American and white women in the United States. Among American Indian and Alaska Native women, heart disease and cancer cause roughly the same number of deaths each year. For Hispanic and Asian or Pacific Islander women, heart disease is second only to cancer as a cause of death.
Read the rest of this post on our website for more about what heart palpitations may feel like and more.
Originally published at on February 6, 2020.
Your Health Questions Answered
- Answered by: Dr Roger HendersonAnswered: 14/10/2021
Yes. The hormone oestrogen offers some protection against coronary artery disease. It helps to control your cholesterol levels and so reduces the risk of fatty plaques building up inside the artery walls, reducing the risk of a heart attack. During and after the menopause, you gradually produce less oestrogen than previously, so this increases the risk of your coronary arteries narrowing whereas it previously protected the lining of your artery walls. This increases your risk of developing heart disease, or a circulatory condition such as stroke.
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Cardiovascular And Respiratory Side Effects
Seven percent of patients will experience chest pain. Other cardiovascular risks include hypertension and heart palpitations. Progesterone also thickens the blood, making you more prone to blood clotting issues, including thrombosis and embolisms 2. Eight percent of patients experience a cough. Other respiratory effects include nasal congestions, bronchitis and sinusitis.
- Seven percent of patients will experience chest pain.
- Other cardiovascular risks include hypertension and heart palpitations.
Heart Symptoms Often Minimized In Women
Its not totally clear why heart palpitations in perimenopausal or menopausal women are understudied and underrecognized compared with other menopausal symptoms, says Carpenter. It could partly be due to the fact that theres been a historic bias against women in cardiology. Womens symptoms often arent believed or listened to in the same way that mens symptoms are, she says.
At the same time, symptoms of menopause have often been trivialized as no big deal, she says. Heart palpitations are at this intersection of these two things. If people have been attributing the palpitations to menopause there may be a general feeling that these will probably go away, dont worry about it, she says.
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The Possible Results Of Low Oestrogen
There is a range of outcomes from the drop in oestrogen levels that your body is experiencing during menopause which can lead to heart palpitation symptoms including
- High blood pressure due to heart and blood vessels becoming stiff and less elastic. This can cause hypertension and place added strain on the heart
- High cholesterol due to a drop in good cholesterol and a rise in bad cholesterol , increasing the risk of heart attack and heart disease
- Diabetes during menopause can cause women to be more resistant to insulin, which converts blood sugar to energy
- Weight gain as oestrogen affects how and where fat is stored and burned. Menopause slows down metabolism causing weight gain and extra stress on your heart
Menopause heart palpitations will increase the heart rate.
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Deep Breathing for Immediate Relaxation
Exercise for better heart healthWhat treatments are available? Nutritional interventions Pharmacological treatments:Beta blockersAnti-arrhythmic drugsCalcium channel blockersCatheter AblationJust remember, donât panic!
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What Causes Heart Palpitations In Menopause
As with most things menopausal, estrogen is believed to play a role in heart palpitations. Before menopause, estrogen may have heart-protective qualities including keeping arteries flexible. When levels decline that protection declines, too, and reduced blood flow can cause arrhythmia . Lower levels of estrogen can also lead to an overstimulation of the heart. More commonly the palpitations are a normal rhythm, just fast, and are associated with mild anxiety, a hot flash, or just all by themselves.
Unfortunately, little is known about menopause-related heart irregularities, but research like the Menopause StrategiesFinding Lasting Answers for Symptoms and Health multi-center study is beginning to offer some clues.
Heart Disease Medications And Risk
Many women consider the use of hormone replacement therapy pills to relieve their heart palpitation symptoms. This effective strategy should only be explored in consultation with a medically trained doctor, as it can also increase the risk of stroke or deep vein thrombosis .
It is important to note that for every woman, treatment options will be different, and each should find the appropriate form of relief for their personal situation with the help of medical professionals.
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What About Conventional Medicine
If you are worried about your condition, if your irregular heart beat is associated with chest pain, breathlessness or dizziness, then you must speak to your doctor. A range of treatments for various heart issues is available. However, if your irregular heartbeats are caused by the menopause, your doctor may suggest hormone treatments such as HRT.
What Home Remedies Are There For Irregular Heartbeats
Regular aerobic exercises are important for keeping your heart strong and healthy. Walking and swimming are particularly effective as they work all of your muscles but do not negatively impact your joint health.
Eating a healthy balanced diet will keep your body fit and well. If you are strong then your chances of being able to skim through the menopause without experiencing symptoms are higher. It is important to keep drinking plenty of water. This will keep you hydrated and prevent the effects of changes in artery dilations from becoming prominent.
Stress is one of the greatest contributors towards abnormalities in heart rhythm. Taking time each day to relax will lessen the symptoms of an irregular heartbeat. Stress can also result in other health problems, so it is important to tackle this problem.
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Is It Normal To Have Heart Palpitations In Perimenopause
Fortunately, heart palpitations are usually harmless. In certain cases, however, they might point to a more serious condition, such as arrhythmia which requires treatment. As such, its important to discuss perimenopause heart palpitations with your doctor.
Heart palpitations are a condition in which a women feels that the heart has go heavy and weighty. Also women feel heaviness, fluttering and pain in the throat, heart, neck and such areas. Palpitations are considered as the extreme awareness and feeling of heartbeat.
So What Are Heart Palpitations
These three medical terms are the same. They are heartbeats you suddenly notice more than regular heartbeats.
- Heart palpitations
When you experience palpitations, your heart may:
- Beat irregularly
This irregularity often passes in seconds or, at worse, a few minutes. Palpitations may alarm you but remain calm. Most of the time, they are harmless and dont signal a serious underlying problem. So, if you experience heart palpitations, its a good idea to .
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The Australian Menopause Centre Can Help
If heart palpitation symptoms or other symptoms of menopause are causing you concern contact our team here at the Australian Menopause Centre today, and our doctor will discuss your symptoms to determine the appropriate treatment options available.
If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, please do not hesitate to contact us on 1300883 405 to book a no obligation free first consultation and discuss your concerns with one of our doctors.
If youâre feeling depressed or anxious and fear you may have menopause depression, donât wait for reaching out for help. Talking to qualified medical practitioners can support you through the struggles of menopause.
Are Menopausal Heart Palpitations Just Part Of A Hot Flash
Another reason that heart palpitations may be underrecognized is that some previous research has grouped heart palpitations as part of a hot flash, rather than its own symptom, says Carpenter. There are some studies that define hot flashes in terms of heat, sweating, and heart racing or pounding, suggesting that palpations occur at the same time as the hot flashes, she says.
However, when I talk to women, these palpitations are often separate from the hot flashes theyre feeling these when they lay down at night or in the middle of the day- sort of odd times that arent related to the hot flashes, says Carpenter. This suggests that palpitations is its own symptom, separate from hot flashes, she adds.
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Learn Stress Management Tips
Stress is a major trigger for heart palpitations at any age and phase of life. During menopause, stress is increased not only by the many discomforts that can arise but also by hormonal fluctuations.
This makes stress management vitally important to support heart health. Breathing, meditation, yoga, tai chi, massage, guided visualizations and other tools can all help naturally lower stress levels.
Other Possible Causes Of Heart Palpitations
- Thyroid Disease
How I Healed My Heart Palpitations Overnight
I have been reading this year in Rosemary Gladstars Herbal Recipes For Vibrant Health. This book has a lot of great information on panic attacks, anxiety, depression, and healing the nervous system.
This paragraph in her book caught my attention:
Symptoms of mental distress or disorders such as irritability, nervousness, panic attacks, excess fear, depression, or suicidal tendancies often indicate a B-vitamin deficiency.B vitamins are most effective taken as a complex.
Dealing with mental or emotional distress often calls for healing it from several different angles. I was already drinking a nerve tonic , but after reading about B-vitamin deficiency, I knew I needed to add it to my regime. I purchased Garden of Life Raw B Complex. Buy the complex here.
The morning after taking a dose of the B Complex, my heart palpitations were completely gone, and they have not returned since. For me, I was already working on my nervous system and adrenals, so a B-vitamin complex was the missing key. I am still taking a B-vitamin complex daily as I continue to heal my nervous system.
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