Heart palpitations are the irregular awareness of the heart beating. You dont have to necesarilly have an irregular, fast, or slow heart beat to have palpitations.
So how does one make the distinction between a normal awareness of heart beat and an "irregular awareness" of heart beat? aka palpitations.
I know that many people are able to feel their heart beating while at rest and this is considered normal. So why are those people not labeled as having "palpitations" ?
One day after a night of partying my heart rate went to 120 for 8 hours. This doesnt happen anymore. However, I used to have panic attacks about it. Now, I dont even have the panic attacks but I do get a certain amount of anxiety and negative anxious feelings. How do I shake the anxiety? If I start thinking about my heart beat my anxiety and anxious feelings can increase...I wont go into a panic attack..but I will become uncomfortable and I will begin wondering whether my awareness of my heart beat is normal or not. I kinda feel like I am crazy.
Wikipedia has this to say: "A palpitation is an abnormal awareness of the beating of the heart, whether it is too slow, too fast, irregular, or at its normal frequency. The difference between an abnormal awareness and a normal awareness is that the latter is almost always caused by a concentration on the beating of one's heart and the former interrupts other thoughts."
As I sit here, I can feel my heart beating, but only if I concentrate on it. I take Atenolol, I used to take 50 mg in the morning, good for all day right. Well, it used to be, but eventually I noticed that my heart would pound hard in the evening. This would bother me. So I consulted with the Doctor, and it was changed to 25 mg in the morning and 25 mg at night. For me this worked, for awhile at least, at reducing the pounding sensation I felt at night. From the Wiki definition, this would be considered an Abnormal Awareness of my heart (the pounding), as it preoccupied my mind in worrying about it. As I sit here and am only vaguely aware of my heart beating, I am not preoccupied about it, I know that it's in there, and this explains the feeling. Nothing to worry about, nice slow and even rhythm.
I suspect that your anxiety is not about your heart beating, more so its about your concern that it will stop beating. Ever hear the saying: I'm not afraid of heights, it's the sudden stop that I fear (as if one would fall). If you think like I did at one time that the heart is a frail organ barely held together and ready to fail at any moment, it can make one anxious. But the heart is a strong organ, engineered over many thousands of years, with the intent on remaining beating regardless of many challenges presented to it.
I had recently heard that prior to World War I, Doctors even thought the heart was frail. This was quickly dismissed by field surgeons that would remove shrapnel from it (from ammunition fragments), sew it up, and it would keep working. It spurred them into more surgeries. Then there is the wonderful back-up on the electrical system of the heart. The SA Node, in the Atrium, is the heart’s natural pacemaker. It discharges, the signal travels, and activates the AV Node, from there going into the ventricles. But what if the SA Node fails? Surprisingly, if the AV Node does not receive a signal from the SA Node, it discharges by itself, and causes the heart to beat. Mind you, the heart beats at a much slower pace, referred to as Bradycardia, but it does keep beating. [Bradycardia has other causes as well, and does not necessarily indicate a loss of the SA Node function]. This is a spectacular back-up system. There are other redundant pathways as well, the loss of a particular pathway does not necessarily bring grievous harm to the patient.
I would avoid Illicit Drugs, it’s odd that Hollywood remembers each actor that died from a gunshot wound, yet forgets the many lives lost due to drugs. Some of the drugs that Hollywood abuses can have very negative effects on the rhythm of the heart. Also avoid Caffeine, decongestants, and Diet Pills, if you are concerned about a rapid heart beat.
Anxiety is an odd thing. It builds on itself. It can come from things that the mind has problems understanding. When I try to think about infinity, my mind grows very anxious, as it is something that can’t be comprehended. Sometimes the same is true when we think of our bodies, the things that go on inside don’t make a lot of sense to our minds, but they are carefully controlled by various systems in our body.
Anxiety is a common aspect of life. A person that can bungee jump off of a high bridge may be disproportionately afraid of spiders and insects. There is no right and wrong for what we should have anxiety about, but if it keeps us from relating to others or keeps us from doing our jobs, sometimes more help is needed. Keep in touch with your Doctor if you feel that you have issues with your health.
For the most part (unless I'm moving around a lot) I can sense my heart beating. That's nice. On occasions my heart seems to beat with a lot of force (imagine the pounding you get after going up a few flights of stairs). I have no idea why my heart decides to do this but it does. I think of those as palpitations. Completely harmless but noisy. Just my own personal interpretation.
If you think your heart may be a problem get it checked out, when you are feeling this way! I used to to tell people my heart was pounding, and they said I was a hypochondriac. Now I have a pacemaker and am doing better. When you have an irregular rhythm it is hard to take an accurate pulse rate. only a doctor can tell you for sure if you have a problem. If I had went to the doctor sooner I may not have a pacemaker today. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
i had a heart rate of 98 and was given propananol for 3days and it reduced to 79 and my blood pressure as well.I used to have this feeling of uneasiness but it stopped after the propananol but im left with this over awareness of heart beat and dyspnea,iv had my heart checked,my doctors say my lungs are clear whenever i go to the clinic with shortness of breathe.Could there be any other test i could do cos i have seen so many doctors and they tell me its just my mind.i have done ERS,ECG,HB,PCV,urinalysis,urea creatinine and all came out well,i dnt have any chest pains or any complaints apart from the fact that my mornings are depressing cause i have severe lack of energy even after a good sleep
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