Avatar universal

Pounding heart beat everytime I try to fall asleep/ Am I sick or just crazy???????

Hello*** I was wondering if anyone could provide me a little information and possibly some relief to the problem I am experiencing right now.  Every night for the past week or so, when I try to fall asleep, my heart rate accelerates tremendously and pounds like crazy.  Normally I never have any trouble falling asleep so this is becoming somewhat of an annoyance because I actually FEEL sleepy but because my heart beats so fast and so hard it keeps me awake.  I can feel it throughtout my body and it lasts for hours. I try so hard to fall asleep that I have come up with little tricks to kind of "pych myself out".  Like I try rolling over in different positions trying to offset the rhythm so hopefully when it starts again it will be normal. I try to clear my mind totally.  After a while I will doze off, (without me knowing but I'm not complaining) but I'll wake like 45 min later only to realize that my heart is still beating as hard as ever.  If I get really annoyed I'll try to stand up, walk around or go for a drink of water.  But nothing helps.  And I'm so sleepy. As soon as I settle back in it starts again. I have had anxiety issues in the past but I think what made it worse for me is that at first I didn't know what it was.  Then once I became more aware of what an actual "anxiety attack" was it just kind of went away on its own.  And I do admit I was dealing with a whole lot at the time.  But now, on the contrary, there has been no extreme changes in my life or anything I would say I am really stressed or worried over; @ night all I pretty much want to do is sleep and I can't.  It's coming to the point now that I am almost expecting my "nightly episodes", like I'm looking for it to start.  And this is an obsession (an unhealthy one at that) that I don't care to have!  The way my heart beats it feels like to me that it is pumping way too much blood throughout my body for too long of a time,  my heart might burst, or I may die in my sleep.  Its poisoning my thoughts and I wish I knew what to do to make it stop.  I'm afraid. Please help.
54 Responses
592969 tn?1248325405
I have this sometimes also.  My doctors told me it was an adrenal problem and my uncles also have it.  My uncles have been given Atenolol (beta blocker) to take at nighttime.  You may ask your doctor if you should have some kind of medicine to help.  With me, I go through periods of this and then I'm okay for awhile again.  I do not take anything, but it really makes me tired sometimes takes a couple of days to rest up.  Once my heart did this for 48 hours, talk about exhausting.  Doctors told me nothing to worry about and that it would not shorten my lifespan.  
Thank you encephalomalcia you have helped to clear some of the anxiety i had about my heart beating abnormally hard
Avatar universal
Thank you so much for your response! I am new to this & am hoping for as much feedback as possible.  What you said was very insightful.  Just a few quick questions though... what causes adrenal problems? and, I heard of beta blockers..what exactly is that & what does it do?  I just cant understand how doctors all seem to say the same thing, how it's nothing to worry about when it feels so powerful to you. There has to be some explaination other than 'it's not life threatening, you'll be fine'.  I want to know how to stop it without taking a boatload of medicine.  I was kind of hoping to try something more natural.
Hi, my name is maia  and I have been experiencing this too. My heart races it feels like someone is leaning over me but I know no one is there. It's like adrenalin. I get really scared and I feel the only way to fix it if is someone is sleeping in my room with me, but it doesn't seematter to help. I read for hours finish many books but nothing seems to help, watching a movie can keep me occupied. But I am really just so tired. Since I was little I fainted alot (during speeches or just talking to someone) so I have done this a few times. I get so tired I can't speAK or move at all. I hate it so much. I found a diagnosis : atrial fibrillation.
Avatar universal
As soon as I started reading your post I knew it was from anxiety...And once you mentioned it, I knew 100% it was from anxiety. Just by the way you express how you feel it is easy to see that you are creating high anxiety thus making it worse. Such as my heart might burst or I might die in my sleep, these are anxious feelings and I guarantee that is what you are thinking before you even step foot into bed or feel your heart start to pound. This actually happens quite often to people. It doesn't have to necessarily be just from a panic attack but it is generally from anxiety alone. this is one of the most common symptoms with people who have anxiety and it is absolutely nothing to worry about! The only pill you need is a chill pill. Try to really relax yourself and know that you will be fine before you go to bed, regardless if your heart pounds or not. There is nothing that makes your heart JUST pound out of no where unless you are running, anxious, or taking drugs etc.. So Unless you are doing drugs of some sort, such as cocaine or amphetamines before you go to sleep, IT'S IN YOUR HEAD. DON'T WORRY, RELAX, TAKE A DEEP BREATH, KNOW THAT YOU WILL BE FINE (REGARDLESS), AND START TO ENJOY YOUR SLEEP!
Avatar universal
If you have an irregular Heartbeat it is caused by anxiety.
Over 70% of people with irregular heartbeats (arrhythmia) have no problem at all. Many of them believe their lives wont last long, that is wrong.

I am going to show you how to cure your irregular heartbeat

What is happening to you is called POT (Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia) In simple explanation, it is a form of Tacycardia (thumping fast heartbeat) that happens when you try to relax.

First thing you need to do is see your cardiologist. After performing an ECG and other tests on you, you cadiologist will probably tell you that you are ok. That is what you should expect!  A sensible cardiologist will prescribe something for your heartbeat.
A sensible cardiologist will never prescribe sleeping pills or tranquilizers for you (never).
If your cadiologist sends you home you may get the POTS symptoms again but dont panic.

If after you visited the cadiologist and the cardiologist told you that your heart was perfectly normal and you went home but found out you couldnt sleep again due to the POTs repeating itself then it is due to dehydration.

If you couldnt sleep all night or slept very little due to the POTS, you may happen to have very fast heartbeat when you are done with the sleep in the morning.

Check your blood pressure when you wake up or when you are done sleeping. It will definitely show up very high. The minimum may be above 100,110,120 or whatever. Dont panic. Dont take blood pressure pills just sit up and wait for five minutes. Then take you your blood pressure again, this time lying down and relaxing while breathing gently. It will show up lower than before.

When you are done you must drink 3 litres of water that day between morning and late afternoon. From the time you wake up till 4pm at the most. You can take other driinks but not caffeine drinks.
[If you have kidney complications and are on dialysis and you know you cant drink then your must tell your dialysis doctor to increase your weight to a level that wont dehydrate you too much]

(If the symptom is occuring during the winter period), then from 4pm wear a shirt with double sweaters while you are indoors.

At 7pm take a very warm shower and after the shower put back your shirt and double thick sweaters back on. After the shower, dont sit infront of your computer. Anything you were doing such as playing video games or entertaining yourself like watching TV, you shouldn't do them after the shower. After the shower you can eat.

Important Note:
If your POTS problem have been affecting your sleep lately you should never ever take sleeping pills, relaxants or tranquilizers. In fact never in your life should you make it a habit of using sleeping pills, because if you use them regularly a time comes when you will not be able to do without them. You will not be able to sleep anymore and that will affect your brain function. The more you sleep naturally without sleeping pills (regardless of sleeping problems or not) the more will your brain generate more cells, work better and improve your memory. Sleeping pills can also reduce your lifespan.

After your shower, dont lie down. Get a book, a novel that you know might be of your interest and then you sit at the end of your bed and read it. Read it till your eyes begin to get weak. When you notice your eyes are getting weeaker and you feel more sleepy get an electric kettle and boil some water. Make sure it is really hot. Put the water into a warm water bottle. You may ask someone to do it for you while you are reading your book.
When your eyes can take it no more and you feel very sleepy, go to bed and with your double sweaters still on, take the water bottle and put it on your chest area or upper back.

Cover yourself with a thick coverlette so that the warmt cant be felt under the blanket.You will sleep very soundly till morning.

You should repeat this procedure for as much as 4 days. Make you drink more water and fluids more than you urinate to keep your body out of dehydration. Also eat healthy, no illegal drugs, dont smoke and take less caffeine and you will be fine.


Thank You For a Great Explanation and taking the time to ease our fears.
Avatar universal
Hi,I am Raihan from Assam,India.I have been facing the same problem for the last few months.Whenever I try to sleep my heart beat becomes so hard that I can feel in my whole body.I can understand from your above reply that it may be because of anxiety. I am jobless for the last 2months and I think, thinking of that makes my heart pound so hard while trying to sleep.

If I try to sleep early(say by 10:30) and if everything is OK like no hard pounding of heart then my sleep breaks by 1am and I can't sleep the whole night.

Most of the time when my heart pounds hard I can't sleep the whole night and fall asleep in the morning by 6am.

I have analysed that it is happening to me because of less intake of water. I hardly take 2ltrs of water in 3-4 days or sometimes in winter it is 1ltr in 1 week.

Even while writing this my heart is pounding hard and I am awake(at 3am) because I was unable to sleep due to hard heart beats.
Avatar universal
Hello, I have the same problem and I am almost 100% certain it's anxiety. This has been going on for a few months. It first happened while in a movie theater, my heart started pounding, felt like passing out so I went to the hospital. They diagnosed it as SVT (supra ventricular tachycardia). I wore a heart monitor for a month, had an ultrasound of my heart as well as EKGs and blood tests, nothing showed up. It's been going on ever since. There was a death close to my family prior to this (I think what set it off) and ever since then I've felt I've had some untreated medical condition that no one understands. I have many other anxiety symptoms, worry a lot and my heart seems to pound, especially at night or when trying to relax for no good reason. This worrying seems to fuel it even more. Sometimes I can't fall asleep until 3am. At times I don't feel stressed but my body obviously is. I workout 5 days a week, don't drink coffee or do drugs. I'm only 19 and hope this can get fixed.
Avatar universal
Im having the same problem hence landing on this page,trying to find an answer.mine felt lijr tachycardia ,vry bouncy through my neck and chest
Avatar universal
I'm 36, in shape, non smoker.

I've been dealing with this off and on for the last two yrs.  Two emergency trips.  Normal blood work, EKG, Chest Xray. head CT Scan, MRI.  Most recently I have been dealing with this for about a week.  When I am at that twilight point about to fall asleep, it feels like sinking feeling then a shock.....and my heart goes racing.  Saw a Cardiologist... Again normal EKG and examine.  I am currently on a heart monitor.  Been driving me crazy.  
Did you figure it out?
Avatar universal
This has been so helpful. I have been going crazy. I haven't had money to go to doctor. Will have medicare in Feb and plan to get this taken care of. I have not had a good night's sleep in a long time and it is really getting to me. I will have to force myself to drink water. I didn't realize that this was such a common thing. When I lay down and start to doze my heart will all of a sudden beat hard and I go into a full panic attack. I have been having a lot of anxiety issues before this. Having trouble breathing. I get out of breath real easy. If I can't get my throat cleared I panic and can't catch my breath I go into a full anxiety/panic attack. I feel like I am going to die.  All of this has started this year. I have just started having phobias. Claustrophobia, fear of death,etc. I really feel I am going crazy. I feel that finding this site with all of yalls comments on your situations has really been a real help. It's a start. Thank you all. And good luck!
11873323 tn?1421749670
Hello everyone, I have also been going through the same! It's really bad I get stressed every time I try to sleep just by hearing my heartbeat, the bed even moves, its like a mini earthquake!. I've become emotionally sensitive to any weird sensation I feel. I've been researching everywhere since my medical results are coming in about a month, I think I have developed  like health anxiety or something, panic attacks I suppose as well. I don't have any concrete information about my health and it's driving me crazy. I will visit the endocrinologist for the glands, cardiologist for chest pains and the powerful hammer like heart beats, neurologist and psychologist. I want to eliminate every variable before I can say its only mentally related because its so hard to believe, but its a possibility. I admit I went on a mission to change my lifestyle and exposed myself to uncomfortable places and people, I guess this are the results Idk. This feels like I have crossed the line to insanity, getting crazy for any new symptom or weird feeling I have, researching everything, overthinking it all every day. I can't sleep anymore because my mind just doesn't shut up. Good luck guys we will get through this! Oh I almost forgot I went to the ER and everything was ok, they told me that it was extreme anxiety but I honestly don't know.
Avatar universal
Hello, I started having all kinds of heart issues and then started getting anxiety. I don't know what came first. The two seemed to compound themselves. Two weeks ago I decided to do the Master Cleanse and somehow my anxiety went away and so did my heart problems. My heart has not gone into atrial fib since then.  I really didn't know if the cleanse would do anything, I was just desperate so I tried it. It was very hard the first two days but then got easier as I noticed improvements. It really works! Please try it.
Avatar universal
Thank you very much your comment just killed my anxiety , I love you no homo wether your a girl or a guy
Avatar universal
I have had these rapid heart palpitations for years off and on. Once I got my c-pap they stopped.... they only come back when my back gets out of place. I know it sounds freaky but it is true. I have had them last for 15-20 min until I can get someone to twist me sideways and push on my mid back. When I see my Chiropractor off and on it goes away. Sometimes it triggers them when I am lying on my left side. For some reason my heart doesn't like it. My c-pap doc says that when my heart was starving for oxygen it would beat hard and fast to try to get more oxygen. So I wake up and do some deep breathing and change positions. That's why the relaxation exercises work.
Avatar universal
I have CAD and sleep apnea. My Doctors advise against sleeping pills and muscle relaxers because they can slow the heart in some people and cause shallow breathing which makes tachy worse
Avatar universal
I had adrenal burnout really bad years ago and that is when my problem started. I also had bad muscle spasms in my back and would stay "out of place in the thoracic area" Which made it worse. When I went to the Chiropractor it would go away for a long time. I had to get off of all stimulants. No coffee!
Avatar universal
I have this problem too, the heart pounding as soon as my head hits the pillow. I don't doubt that for a lot of people, it's anxiety. But I DON'T HAVE anxiety. It's just an annoying heart pounding that keeps me awake. I will guzzle water before going to bed, thinking it's because I'm dehydrated, but it doesn't seem to help. Maybe makes it worse? I have no feelings of worry, no doom and gloom. My life is fine. I'm just lying there, SUPER tired and THUMP THUMP THUMP. I might as well turn the stereo on full volume than try to go to sleep. SO ANNOYING!!!
Avatar universal
I have the same problem.
Its been more than a year that im having proparanolol which is a beta blocker to control my fast heart beat and chest pain. Doctor told me that my adrenal caused this and the reason behind why my adrenal is not working properly is because i passed a bad anxiety period.
Every night i try to fall sleep my fast heart beat starts and in the morning, i have the same problem when i wake up. Usually when i sit and take deep breath, the peoblem goes away fast but the moment i lay on bed, it starts again.
If anybody had the same peoblem and managed to fix it, please tell me?
Avatar universal
Exactly! For me it seems to disappear the moment i get out of bed...
15256956 tn?1439425231
39 / Male here.

High Blood Pressure, Sleep Apnea and (Dun dun DUN) Anxiety Disorder.

For the past few days, when I retire to bed (usually around 1:30 AM), I get tucked in, lights out, and in that twilight-period just as sleep is about to come, I get chest pain and can feel my heart pounding.

I get up and my heart is fine. Normal pulse, etc.


This is awful.

I also noticed I had some, I dunno, pre-dream, waking-dream images?

My CPAP can't get here fast enough.
Avatar universal
I have a same problem last 18 months. First palpitations I've got 5,5 years ago just woke up with very fast heart beat, walked around and drink water. Nothing after but 18 months ago we had too much work, bought the house and my wife pregnant. One night had fast palpitation and from that time its just comes and goes. Mainly during weekend while I am trying to rest or sleep, with similar symptons, can't sleep, or wake up around 1 or 2 am afraid that my heart stop beating, and can't fall asleep again, sometimes I have trouble with my left shoulder and arm, sensation or tingling, some days very tired just want to go to bed and sleep even I know I won't. I had acupuncture done 6months ago 4 sessions and my fast heart beat is gone, doctor was very helpful. But I can't still feel pounding while in bed. I recently changed the job (last 5 years everysecond week on call, expecting that anyone can call me 24/7 include weekends, lot of overtime, no rest ) I just could not handle it. I thought it will be hard but it was not, important thing is to do the first step and have your family behind you, I've got less money, but less stress, much more happier and slowly I am getting better. Friend of mine had similar problems and told it could take 3 to 6 months to get better, but I need to change my thinking too. Calm down, read books, watch less tv and monitors.
Also I visited very good chiropractor kynesiologist and she did few test on me. After the session she gave me magnesium Blackmores P.C.M.P. and have 1 tablet 3 times a day or if I feel palpitation or pounding have 1 tablet every hour no more than 6 tablets ( 1 tablet  65mg ), or I bought magnesium flakes and I dissolve the flakes in water 40 - 50 gram in 1 liter and I spray my chest before sleeping or area with the problem.
If we don't have enough magnesium in our body we muscle crumps (heart is the strongest and toughest muscle in our body ) involuntary eye movement or other symptoms.
Read this website http://www.ancient-minerals.com/magnesium-deficiency/symptoms-signs/
Very helpful.
Also I stopped drinking coffee (very hard, had headache for 3 - 4 weeks but drink a lot of water) huge addiction
Also I reduced meat, big portion of food and I am eating more vegetable, nuts, lentils, peas, beans.

But I definitely try have a shower, read the book and have hot water bottle handy.
Hopefuly someone will find my information helpfull. If I know something more I will share.
Avatar universal
Sorry one more thing I had all heart exams and everythings normal. And I am 39 years old. Maybe I am scarred that I will turn 40 soon. Everything possible. Have agood night
Avatar universal
Hi my name is Amin I'm 28 and
I have the same problem for past 5 years .
Im a none smoker, non alchoholic, no drug. I was doing 5 hours per day all kind of sports specially football and my weight was 78kg and I'm 92Kg now.
I was living alone for long time and  I was sleeping so late and I was drinking too much redbull befor because of exams.
when ever i was sleeping in front of TV or I went to bed when i felt sleep with very small noice or even without any noice suddenly my heart was pumping very bad and my body was getting so tired Like I did a very heavy exersice and after that I was relaxed and I could sleep. But after some time it became worth and one night I felt very bad and upnormal and I went to hospital I had short breath and I felt my heart is out of my chest and I had dizziness. And after that I could not sleep for 8 month at all even I used high dosage of sleeping pills by doctor prescription but I could not sleep.
From that time I left my sport and I was worry always. For 3 years I used INDERAL pill.even last time it happens to me inside the airplane I became like a wood and I had too much dizziness for 30 min and for past 2 years I got fobia of flight too.
Since that time I have fobia too be alone at home, I have fobia to go to water park or travel by car and go to and empty road and ... .
In one word this issue canceled all my plans and my daily routines.
At the moment I don't have this issue during sleep but 4 or 5 times a week it happens and mostly when I'm sitting badly and I feel that there is gas flowing along my chest and my throat. I have short breath and my blood pressure is going up and I feel sweaty and sometimes shaking.
I'm really fed up and I'm looking for a solution if there is any.

That, Amin, is probably Anxiety or more likely Panic Disorder. Get yourself to a clinic and they can get you some anti-anxiety meds. If you can, go to a psychiatrist to get a full diagnosis by someone who knows what's going on. If this is Panic then meds should be enough to get you back on track. I see a lot of people like this try therapy our self help mumbojumbo just to end up where they started; this is most likely a imbalance of chemicals in your brain so unless you can right that wrong no amount of "and how does that make you feel" will help. Just take the meds and once they kick in go out and do those things you say are phobias. Having a panic attack will give you an avoidance behavior, or as you say a phobia, towards every thing, place, and even people that you perceived while having the attack. So once on medication you can teach your brain these are not bad things by observing these things under a positive light.

This is learned from many doctor visits, research, and personal experience.
Ps:Once medicated some self help mumbojumbo actually does the mind some good so don't count that out entirely :)
Also sorry if I post this twice I have no experience with this site
From my experience instead of chemical try good acupuncture, helped me a lot, drink water get vitamin B6, B12 potassium magnesium one banana and avocado, 20 grams of nuts a day
Walking helping a lot too, I read the article about connection between carpal tunnel and heart palpitation too, check it too. Have you got any trouble with your arm hands???
Avatar universal
Had the same problem for a while. Now it got worse - did not sleep all night yesterday.  Just at the moment of falling a sleep the crazy heart racing starts and wakes me up. My heart rate is also very slow though . My cardiologist did not find anything wrong. I am going to ask him to put me on roundaclock portable heart monitor. So many people of different ages are suddenly having the same problem. Can it be induced by another vicious virus? If I learn more I will post. Wonder if this is a man's only issue - see no girls responding to this, though I might miss.

Someone mentioned sleep apnea. My doc explained that sleep apnea is mot like pauses in breathing, not heart palpitations. Wish all of us quickest recovery from this mystery, so help us God!
Avatar universal
Last night after falling asleep for an hour I woke up with my heart pounding out of my chest,it happens to me every once in a while and I so have panic attacks and bad anxiety..I talked to my friend who is a medical assistant she's very smart and she told me it's anxieties I haven't taken my meds in the past couple of days and I've been totally stressed at work cause I hate my job with a passion anyway I find that taking my meds at night helps but we deal with so much in this world stress is bad so try and get it under control b/c it will make u sick trust me
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