Heart Palpitations When Lying Down At Night
If you sleep on your side, you may be more susceptible to heart palpitations at night due to the way your body bends and pressure builds up internally.
Another factor to consider when experiencing palpitations at night is that they may be happening all day without you noticing. In this case, you might notice them at night due to lower noise levels and reduced distractions while you lie in bed.
The symptoms of heart palpitations can be concerning if theyre unexpected or you havent experienced them before. These symptoms include:
- the feeling of an irregular pulse or that your heart stopped briefly
- a sensation of fluttering in your chest
- a fast or pounding heart rate
Short and infrequent palpitations at night are usually not a cause for alarm. Generally speaking, heart palpitations are usually harmless.
However, you should seek immediate medical attention if you experience heart palpitations along with any of the following symptoms:
Improving Your Heart Rate
When it comes to improving your heart rate, maintaining a healthy body composition and regularly engaging in physical activity are key. According to Harvard Health Publishing, exercising within target heart rate zones can help to strengthen the heart and improve aerobic capacity. To safely and effectively train with heart rate zones, it is encouraged that individuals first seek clearance from their healthcare provider, and consider training under the guidance of a qualified fitness professional.
Can Something I Eat Or Drink Cause Heart Palpitations
A common substance associated with palpitations is caffeine. Some people are sensitive to any amount of stimulant, but we began to see more caffeine-related palpitations when espresso-based drinks like cappuccinos and lattes became popular in the 1990s. Frequently reducing or eliminating beverages that contain caffeine such as coffee or soda can improve palpitations.
Some patients complain of palpitations when they eat too much chocolate, and some patients respond with palpitations around the holiday when they tend to drink too much alcohol.
Some over-the-counter medications such as cold and allergy remedies that contain decongestants often can precipitate palpitations.
Frequently, palpitations occur without any obvious precipitating factor, although fatigue, stress, and lack of sleep also cause palpitations to occur or worsen.
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Normal Heart Rate Ranges
|> 100 bpm||Tachycardia|
In certain circumstances, a heart rate higher or lower than what’s considered normal is nothing to worry about. It all depends on what you’re doing.
For example, some people may have a heart rate in the 50s while sleeping, which is completely normal. On the other hand, if you are exercising, you can expect your heart rate to go above 100 bpm.
Can Herbal Remedies Help Prevent Heart Palpitations
In terms of herbal remedies, I am not aware of an herbal remedy specifically effective for heart palpitation. I should say that low levels of potassium or magnesium in the body may be associated with palpitations and occasionally even more severe heart rhythm disorders, and in those cases supplements or foods high in potassium and magnesium are quite helpful.
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Having A Racing Heart Chest Pain And Dizziness
A racing heart, chest pain, and dizziness are warning signs of a heart attack. If you or someone else are experiencing these symptoms, call 911 or your local emergency services right away.
A heart attack is a medical emergency and needs immediate medical treatment. Go to the nearest emergency room if you experience these symptoms.
Your doctor will begin by asking about your symptoms and performing a physical examination. Theyll listen to your heart and check for signs of conditions that can cause a racing heart, such as an enlarged thyroid.
Your doctor may also order one or more of the following tests:
Are Premature Ventricular Contractions Life Threatening
If someone has normal heart function and no evidence of structural heart disease, the PVCs are a nuisance, but benign. If the PVCs are so symptomatic as to be disruptive, try eliminating all of the factors such as caffeine, certain foods, stress, before considering any treatment with medications. When we do treat with medications, we usually try to use simple medications such as beta-blockers first before going on to specific anti-arrhythmic agents. Very frequently, this is enough to improve patients’ symptoms.
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How The Heart Works
The heart has two upper chambers and two lower chambers .
The atria and ventricles have walls of muscle. A heartbeat happens when this muscle suddenly contracts so that the chambers become smaller and the blood inside is squeezed out.
The control of the heartbeat starts with a small clump of cells in the right atrium, called the sinoatrial node . This sends out electrical impulses through the atrial muscle to another clump of cells called the atrioventricular node, found between the atria and ventricles. The impulse then continues through the AV node down fibres that conduct the impulse into the muscle of the ventricles.
The AV node determines the rate of contraction of the ventricles. The pulse felt at the wrist is due to the contraction of the ventricles.
Tachycardia: How High Is Too High
“A resting heart rate that is frequently over 110 or occasionally over 140 can lead to heart damage or heart failure and may need to be treated,” Dr. Santucci says. According to the American Heart Association, the medical term for a heart rate above 100 is tachycardia. Symptoms may include:
- Passing out.
- Shortness of breath.
Although the range of normal for a resting and sleeping heart rate is wide, the Mayo Clinic says to let your doctor know if your resting heart rate is consistently above 100, especially if you have any symptoms of tachycardia.
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How Do I Get A Diagnosis
Depending on the underlying cause, it may not be a deathly diagnosis right away. Its essential, however, to distinguish between stress or other external triggers and an underlying heart condition. If you are experiencing a racing heart regularly when you wake up, cut out the external triggers. If a week passes, and you dont feel any changes, its probably time to schedule an appointment with your doctor.
Since your palpitations havent eased with the removal of known environmental triggers, your doctor will want to understand the basic structure of your heart as well as run tests for related conditions that could cause your heart to race. These may include blood tests to check for things like anemia or sleep tests for conditions such as Sleep Apnea.
Periods Pregnancy And Menopause
Heart palpitations during pregnancy are caused by the increased amount of blood in the body, which can cause your heart to beat 25 percent faster than usual.
Here are some other symptoms that can accompany waking up with a racing heart and what they could mean.
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Causes Of Awakening From Sleep With A Racing Heart
This is most commonly caused by anxiety that could result from underlying stress or a bad dream, says Morton Tavel, MD, Clinical Professor Emeritus of Medicine, Indiana University School of Medicine, and author of Health Tips, Myths and Tricks: A Physicians Advice.
1 Side effects of medications like those for cold, or asthma inhalers
2 High caffeine intake before bedtime
3 Drop in blood pressure while asleepthe heart speeds up to compensate to make sure theres enough blood circulating throughout your body. Causes are many including pregnancy.
4 Drop in blood sugaragain, the heart speeds up to compensate. Causes include strenuous exercise with inadequate recovery nutrition.
5 Hyperthyroidism , though youll likely have additional symptoms like unintentional weight loss or feeling hot when nobody else in the room does.
6 A less likely cause would a heart rhythm disorder that results in an inappropriately rapid rate, says Dr. Tavel.
In this latter case, the problem is usually benign and often resolves spontaneously.
The condition is called supraventricular tachycardia, of which there are several types.
People who have this are primarily young adults. It can last minutes to hours and be accompanied by a tight chest and feeling breathless.
Dr. Tavel also explains, In some instances, it can be terminated by vigorous coughing or by breath-holding combined with bearing down .
If it doesnt stop within about 20-30 minutes, medical attention should be sought promptly.
About Increased Heart Rate
According to MedlinePlus, palpitations that give you the sense your heart is beating faster than normal may be discomfiting, but are usually not serious. Many of the common causes, such as those outlined below, are not life threatening and are often easily treatable. However, they can be a sign of heart complications, so if your symptoms persist and you also experience chest pain and shortness of breath, you should contact a doctor immediately for an accurate diagnosis.
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When Are Heart Palpitations A Cause For Concern
Occasional heart pounding, racing, or fluttering is pretty normal. But if you are experiencing chronic palpitations every time you go to bed, and you’re hydrating, reducing stress levels, and monitoring caffeine intakeâit’s a good idea to talk to a doctor.
Sometimes heart palpitations can be signs of heart conditions like arrhythmia, heart valve disorders, thyroid conditions, or myocarditis. These conditions are chronic problems that require treatment, so be sure to reach out to a doctor if you feel strange heartbeats consistently. Heart attack signs include accompanying chest pain, dizziness, nausea, shortness of breath, or fainting. If you experience these symptoms in tandem with heart palpitations, it’s best to seek treatment urgently.
It can be alarming to feel an abnormal sensation in your chest. It makes sense that your mind might wander to the worst-case scenarios, but rest assured that slight changes in your heartbeat when you lay down are fairly commonâas long as they’re not chronic and no other symptoms arise. So next time your heart is doing gymnastics when you’ve settled in for some sleep, rolling over or getting some water could do the trick.
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Causes Of Supraventricular Tachycardia
An episode of supraventricular tachycardia occurs when abnormal electrical impulses suddenly start in the upper chambers of the heart, and override the heart’s natural rhythm.
SVT is sometimes called paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia . Paroxysm means a sudden temporary disturbance of heart rhythm.
PSVT is usually caused by a short circuit in the electrical system of the heart, which causes an electrical signal to travel rapidly and continuously around in a circle, forcing the heart to beat each time it completes the circuit.
Another type of SVT is called Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, where an abnormal electrical connection occurs between the atria and ventricles . People with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome are born with a strand of extra muscle tissue between these chambers. This produces a short circuit, which causes the fast heartbeat.
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Improving Your Resting Heart Rate Score
If you have an elevated RHR, one of the best things you can do for your heart is to incorporate more cardiovascular exercises into your lifestyle.
Several research studies show a conclusive link between a high resting heart rate and a lower level of physical fitness. The RHR in most people also increases with body weight, and obese people have a significantly higher resting heart rate than the general population.
Hence, adopting a more fitness-oriented lifestyle and losing some weight are some of the best tactics for getting your RHR in control.
Adopting cardiovascular exercises like cycling, swimming, and walking into your daily routine can also strengthen your heart, improve your overall heart health, and reduce your risk of heart disease and other adverse cardiovascular events.
Note: Remember to hydrate properly and get enough sleep. Dehydration and sleep deprivation are two factors that can cause a consistent spike in your resting heart rate, even if you maintain optimal fitness levels.
Improve Your Nocturnal Heart Rate Reduce Your Risks
Nocturnal heart rate is an important metric that helps quantify the efficiency of your cardiovascular system. Tracking your nocturnal heart rate over time and gaining knowledge of how certain behaviors are impacting trends can help develop an individualized lifestyle plan on the journey to optimal health and life performance.
Additionally, tracking heart rate may provide valuable insight or early detection of health conditions such as sleep disorders that can not impact your sleep quality, but may facilitate or exacerbate other health-related issues.
Maintaining positive habits such as consistently engaging in physical activity may help strengthen the bodys most vital muscle- the heart.
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When To Go To The Hospital For Rapid Heart Rate
Rapid heart rate, also known as tachycardia, is defined as a heart rate of 100 beats per minute or higher. Tachycardia can be a normal body response to certain forms of stress, or it can be due to an abnormal heart rhythm.
This article discusses the symptoms and causes of tachycardia and when to seek medical attention.
Normal Cardiac Rhythm During Sleep
Sleep is a dynamic and complex process. The stages of sleep, conventionally divided into rapid eye movement and non-rapid eye movement , are characterised by unique autonomic influences over cardiac rhythm and haemodynamics. Non-REM sleep is graded 14 according to electroencephalogram characteristics and diminished arousability. REM sleep occurs at approximately 90 minute intervals, encompasses most dream activity, and is characterised by rapid eye movements and reduced voluntary muscle activity. Studies of individuals free of cardiac disease show that sinus bradycardia, sinus pauses, and type 1 second degree atrioventricular block are common during sleep .1 Sinus pauses up to two seconds in duration occur commonly in young people in association with sinus arrhythmia .1 This is seen more frequently in athletes,w1 and less frequently in those over 80 years of age.w2 These arrhythmias are, for the most part, both asymptomatic and benign. They are a reflection of changes in autonomic tone that occur during sleep and require no intervention unless accompanied by symptoms.2
Typical arrhythmias demonstrated in a healthy male during sleep. Upper panel: pronounced sinus arrhythmia. Lower panel: type 1 second degree atrioventricular block .
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Typical Resting Heart Rates
For most adults, a normal resting heart rate is considered to be between 60 to 100 bpm, though this range can vary and depends on multiple factors. Adult males tend to have lower heart rates.
A heart rate outside of this range may still be considered healthy in certain situations. For example, athletes and physically fit individuals may have resting heart rates as low as 30 bpm. Your doctor can help you assess whether your resting heart rate is healthy for you.
Resting heart rate decreases with age. For example, one large study found that the upper limit of the average resting heart rate is 110 bpm for adults 18 to 45 years old, 100 bpm for those between 45 and 60 years old, and 95 bpm for those older than 60. These are the average resting heart rates for healthy adults, as reported by the same study:
What Are The 3 Sleep Stages
Most sleep trackers break your night down into three main categories of sleep: REM, deep and light, although you actually cycle through five stages of sleep each night. Knowing how much time you spend in each sleep stage can help you understand your energy levels and fluctuations during the day.
Devices like Fitbits measure how long you stay in different sleep stages.
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If A Racing Heart Is Waking You From Sleep This Can Be Even Scarier Than Pvcs
When youre sleeping, your body is at its lowest energy needs, so why would your heart suddenly start racing?
What awakens you is the sudden racing of your heart, provided that youre not in a deep sleep.
Any deviation from the normal minimal state that your body is in can be enough to pull you out of slumber.
Of course, when that deviation is a racing heart, and youre just lying there in the middle of the night in a dark room, this can be quite alarming.
Factors Affecting Your Heart Rate
So, what affects the speed of your heart? Thats down to your overall health:
- Activity levels: Trained athletes who do lots of exercise tend to have lower heart rates. The more exercise you do, the lower your heart rate will be.
- Cardiovascular health: High blood pressure and heart disease can contribute to a faster heart rate.
- Obesity: Your body size contributes to a faster heart, and this is particularly true if you are obese.
- Caffeine and tobacco: Both have been found to increase your heart rate, even during sleep.
- Bradycardia: The name for exceptionally slow heart rates. According to the American Heart Association, bradycardia is diagnosed in people who have a heart rate lower than 60 BPM.
- Weather: It might sound surprising, but in hot weather or high humidity, your heart rate will go up. This is perfectly normal.
- Emotions: Stress and anxiety can both have an impact on causing a fast heart rate, and studies have shown thats even when you sleep.
- Some medications, such as those for thyroid problems and high blood pressure , can affect your heart rate.
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