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Ignoring palpitations/extra beats???
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Ignoring palpitations/extra beats???

I know many of you experience the pounding heart, racing heart beat, and extra beats.  What do you say to yourself when trying to ignore them, or what activities do you find helps you ignore them the best.  I wake up with the pounding, racing heart everyday, and although deep down I know it's anxiety, I can't help but feel nervous about it. This inturn causes me to experience the extra beats, and then THEY worry me!  It's a viscious cycle!  It's even on my mind when I go to bed, "will my heart pound in the morning??  will I be dizzy??"  It's crazy, I know, but any advice would help.

Thank you all so much for listening!  I can't find the words to express how much you guys have already helped me.  I hope you all had an "up" day today!

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Avatar_n_tn
Did you do any heart test before?

I got over being scared of heart palpitation when I done a full heart test & found nothing.

if you still get scared of them AFTER you do the heart test then you need to ask yourself the question of why you think they're dangerous? since your heart is ok.

Also, usually if you're an anxious person, you'll have some quick anxious thoughts before the heart palpitations start, try to avoid or get yourself busy doing something straight away once these thoughts arrive.

intrupt the thought by thinking or doing anything & try to put your focus on that thing.

You can research relaxation breathing techniques on google & there are plenty but for me they decreased in pattern when firstly I done my heart exam & stopped worrying about having any heart condition or heart attack & they disappeared when I succeeded to intrupt my anxious thoughts when I first get up the morning.

My pattern was around 4-5 times/day, then once a day when I wake up & now its gone.

I'm not a dr & pls make sure you check first that you don't have any medical issue before thinking that its only anxiety.

cheers
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Avatar_n_tn
Hello,

First off, I just wanted to ask, have you been diagnosed with pvc's or if not, if you have been diagnosed with anything? PVC's which are extra beats feel like the feeling like when you get scared . Example:(like almost getting into a car accident) and your heart jumps, and you can feel it in your heart, stomach up to your throat, or kind of like when you are high on  a rollercoaster, and finally make the fall. That's what it feels like, and that's the only way I know how to describe it. Just to reassure you... I have thousands of pvc's a day...EVERYDAY. The doctors will tell you they are harmless if otherwise you have a healthy heart. However, if you have in the 10's of thousands a day...it can cause you to develop cardiomyapathy, which I actually just learned about myself. Cardiomyapathy is weakening of your heart, and can cause congestive heart failure, and other problems. My doc never told me this after 2 years of having these things, and being SOOO uncomfortable. I guess because when you only have them sporadically, it IS harmless, but when you have them like almost every other beat like I do, then that can be dangerous after a period of time. I am still experimenting with the different meds the docs have been prescribing, but....I have read many forums from people that take all kinds of meds, and STILL have them! My advice to you, is to just relax, and try and not worry about them, especially if the dr has told you not to. I KNOW it is much easier said than done, believe me... I went through the same thing, and I used to get really bad panic attacks because I thought I was going to die, and it only makes the problem worse! Take a walk, or a warm bubble bath, or even try listening to some mellow music. Good Luck, and keep in touch!  
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Avatar_n_tn
Are they actually extra beats or is your heart pounding faster from the anxiety?  When I had problems with the palpations, I think I could feel them and was scared because my heart was going faster and faster.  At the time I thought it would cause a heart attack.  But then I read an article on exercise.  It said something like "theres no need to worry about anxiety causing your heart to go a little faster, think about exercising and how your heart beats faster and for even longer periods of time and its fine."  The article had it much better written than how I just said it, but thats the main idea.  Then, I used to feel it during exercising, wondering if my heart was beating too fast.  I easily solved this by researching what its suppose to be at, and using an exercise machine that monitors heart rates, I never even got close to the "danger" zones.  I dunno if any of this helps, but I thought it was semi relevant.  
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213375_tn?1202407400
Thanks for your reply!!!  The reason I worry about my heart is my father died unexpectedly from a silent arrhythmia at 50 years old.  He'd passed a physical with flying colors just six months before!!  The coroner called me and told me to have everyone in his family checked, it was an electrical disturbance in his heart, and a pill could have saved his life.  He meant well, but the worry it caused combined with my grief caused the to develop my anxiety disorder in the months following his passing.  The rapid heart pounding that accompanied it scared the s**t out of me, causing my anxiety to spiral out of control.  That was 7 years ago, and after several trips to the ER, and one week in the hospital from starvation and dehydration, I finally accepted their diagnosis of anxiety.  I became housebound because I refuse to take meds and didn't try therapy (couldn't afford it, or so I thought)  I had a full work up with my cardio about two years ago when the extra beats first appeared.  Echo, stress test, ECG, and event recorder all fine.  He said the few extra beats they captured were "nothing to worry about", and I tried to take his advice.  I did the Midwest Center program, and it gave me my life back.  But over this last year the extra beats have become much more frequent, averaging around 20 per day with as many as 100 in one day.  That day I went to the ER convinced that I was dying from an arrhythmia, but as soon as I was in the ambulance they stopped!!  I didn't have an extra beat during the 3 hours I was at the hospital either.  I know now that it's because I felt safe knowing they could save me, and i calmed right down.  My chest x-ray and CTscan showed no blockages, and my heart is not enlarged, so I'm not in any danger of a heart attack or heart failure.  It's the heart disease (arrhythmia) that terrifies me, but the ECG's showed no disturbance in the hearts rhythm......because I was calm when they did it!!  But when I'm home and my three year old stresses me out, or I get stressed by something they appear, and I begin to worry.  I've only had three or four random extra beats today, but during the short time it's taken me to type this I have had 6!!!  I have a pretty good reason to worry about my heart, and leaving my little ones to grow up without a mom (which is inevidably where my troubled thoughts end up), and I need to figure out how to stop the thoughts from spiraling out of control.

Sorry my response is so long, and that I almost sound defensive.  I just wanted you guys to know that I was normal before my father passed.  I've been trying to patch myself back together for the passed seven years, but some of the seams just aren't coming together.  Thanks again for the advice!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,

ok, so in your case, your fear of the heart palpitations is actually from an experience your dad had & is affecting you, which is logical & ANYONE who possibly will go through the same experience may start checking if they have any issues with their heart too.

I think your solution is easy, I'm not a religious person & it doesn't need a reliegious person to realise that we don't need a heart attack or being sick to die. We could be perfectly healthy driving a car or even at home when a storm comes & kills us or an electrical shock or thunder to hit us, or hit our houses, or our cars, etc....

the moral of my story is simple, humans put some thoughts in calculating probabilities of risk in every single aspect of life & even though we may feel safe staying at home but the chance of anything bad happening to anyone while staying at home could have EXACTLY the same rate as being at work or driving a car, or on a plane or wherever. if we feel safer at home, it means that we don't have ACCURATE knowledge of the risk of going outside. We just used what we know to be safe & never tried other safe places too!

It doesn't need a genious for us to realise that **** happens when it's meant to happen regardless of what type of precaution that we may take "beyond" resonability to protect ourselves.

You've done your best to what any human can do to check yourself out by doing all the medical checks, there's nothing more that you could do in that front to protect yourself. You need to believe that good & bad don't need a reason to come to our life, they just come & we only use our brains to TRY to minimise the risk of bad but NEVER to eliminate it. We could worry all our lives but never we could stop a disaster from happening!

Your fear of sickness is same like all of us, got us sick!

Not that we have any illness but our fear of being sick is what got us sick & if you want to medicate yourself, then you need to believe that you've done your best in checking all your symptoms & that these symptoms that you're getting now are ONLY from anxiety & will stop if you stop worrying about them.

You need to go back & put your attention to those things you were doing & enjoying before your dad's accident occur or before you start to get sick. you may not enjoy them anymore in first instance but keep on trying, it works & you'll enjoy them again & if you could dial back the same routine & way of thinking you had before then all these issues will be bad memories.

look around you in a nice day & ask yourself a question: what did my fear of dying do to me? It made your valuable living days miserable!

you need to stop worrying & be sure that such is life, sometimes happy, sometimes sad but mostly whatever didn't kill us.......made us stronger....& wiser!!

cheers,
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213375_tn?1202407400
I'm sorry I forgot, but I intended to tell you that I'm sorry to hear of your situation.  I would probably lose my mind if I were you!  You probably think I'm being a weenie, not that you would ever say so :-)  !!   Thank you for the reality check!  I now understand how much worse it could be, and I'm almost embarassed to have complained in the first place.  I feel for you and I hope you find some relief from your symptoms soon!  Please keep us updated of your situation, and thanks again!!
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Avatar_n_tn
Its ok. I started out with the mild symptoms like you, but for the past 6 months its been really bad. Even just a few is enough to scare you, and I know how u feel. Because it was just the FEW that gave me the really bad panic attacks, and anxiety, and ER visits. I don't get the anxiety too much anymore cause I know it's going to make it worse. I am kidless for 1 month because their daddy gets them for the summer. So, today is the day I start my walking. Will keep in touch. :)
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213375_tn?1202407400
Thanks to you both for your reply!!  

I do experience rapid pounding heart beat in responce to stressful and anxious situations, however I am plagued by these extra beats daily.  I am sorry I wasn't more clear about what I experience.  The first 5 years of my anxiety disorder I had grown accustomed to the pounding and sometimes racing heartbeat, and tried to tell myself it was a symptom of anxiety, but when I started getting the extra beats my anxiety escalated to a whole new level.  The pounding heart captured by the event recorder was of no concern to my cardio, "normal rhythm, with a few isolated extra beats, nothing to worry about".  That was 2 years ago and I accepted his diagnosis.  I told myself just what you said, that the pounding was making my heart stronger, but I have never gotten over the extra beats.  I can feel these extra beats.  At first it felt like my heart did a flip-flop in my chest, then they evolved into the feeling of my heart stopping or skipping a beat, and now they are almost a painful, pressure-filled beat.  Sometimes my heart tingles, and sometimes I can feel my heart beating against my back.  I guess I'm just hypersensitive to my heart, and notice every little thing.  I stuggle daily not to worry about it, and have made great strides in the passed few days.  I only noticed 4 or 5 yesterday, and they annoyed and angered me much more than they worried me.  I will just have to learn how to accept them as part of my life, and this forum is helping me to do that!!  Thanks again for your concern and support!!
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Avatar_f_tn
It is hard but you could try a mantra "these are normal, they will not harm my heart" etc. etc. Give up coffee, alcohol and any other triggers you find.

I can't remember but think you said you haven't tried medication.  If this is really affecting your life then maybe you should reconsider that. SSRI's are very popular for a good reason... they work pretty darn well. They can even reduce heart problems as they stop/reduce the worry and anxiety.

I don't want to sound like a pusher but paxil worked brilliantly for me and others.

Good luck.
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213375_tn?1202407400
Thanks to both of you!  MOTAH, thank you for that dose of reality!!  Recently I have been letting my health obsession rule my every waking thought, and inturn it has been affecting the quality of my daughters life, and all of the relationships I have (husband, family, friends) took a serious blow.  I finally realized one day that "if I die today so be it, and every moment I spend sitting around worrying about it are moments I should be living life and enjoying things while I still can".  I've also been telling myself "I am having fewer of these extra beats everyday (only one today so far!!), and if I were in danger from a serious arrhythmia the symptoms wouldn't almost disappear when I stopped worrying about it."  

Pum, you're right about a mantra, I call it self-talk.  If I feel one now I immediately tell myself "Ugh, another one, now what just happened to trigger it", ie. a thought, a stressful situation, smoking a cig, ect.  Doing this is working really well for me.  It took me a while but I have eliminated most of my dietary triggers.  No MSG's, nothing processed (enriched,  hydrogenated), no caffine (soda, tea, coffee, chocolate), no sugar (juice, anything fructose, and mosts fruits).  I can't afford the tests to tell if I have any allergies that could trigger them so I've cut out dairy, and intend to remove all gluten and wheat as well.  I drink nothing but 80-90 oz. of water per day.  Dietary changes are hard to adhere to and I'm removing things one at a time, replacing it with a "new" foods as I go.  This process has taken well over three years.  My research over the passed few weeks informed me that nicotine is a major trigger of PAC/PVC's and I've cut way back hoping to be down to 5 cigs/day before I quit cold turkey.  I feel like an idiot/hypocrit to still be smoking considering I worry so much about my heart, but in my defense the statistics show a heroine addict has a better chance of quitting than a smoker, and I think that says alot for the power of nicotine.  Wish me luck :-)

Thanks again to you both!  The support I've gotten on this forum has relieved me so much that I feel better now than I have in months!!!
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