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753647 tn?1233868481

More frequent palpitations after quitting smoking

I have had palpitations, and bouts of extremely rapid heartbeats for about 8 years, with varying degrees of intensity. I saw a cardiologist many years ago who told me that I did not have heart disease and there was nothing to worry about. I believed her and eventually got used to the sensation that my heart was stopping (scary) thenskipping and beating faster, sometimes many times in a row. A coupl of years later, I met an acupuncturist at a party who told me to cut dairy out of my diet. I did, and the palpitations decreased almost to zero.

However, recently, I quit smoking after 22 years, a two pack a day habit in recent years. I am feeling GREAT about it, my breathing is getting a lot easier, and I have started taking small walks, with the intention of increasing them as I get fitter, but my heart palpitations have increased like crazy! My heart seems to skip and jump constantly, sometimes actually stopping me in what I am doing, so I can just breath through it for a few minutes. I would think that these things would get better when not smoking. Any ideas?

Also, I have been having a lot of dizzy spells since quitting, not sure if it is related.
23 Responses
251395 tn?1434497886

Congratulations on giving up the butts! How long has it been since your last cig?
753647 tn?1233868481
It has been two weeks. I know it doesn't seem like a long time, but I haven't even had a slip.
251395 tn?1434497886
Hi Beth!

Well, good for you! I can only imagine how difficult this must be, but you seem to have a  handle on it. You should be proud of your accomplishment and not say,"it's only been 2 weeks." 2 weeks may as well be 2 eternities for someone addicted to nicotine. I have done alot of research and have written papers while in college on "Addiction" All I can say is, "One Day at a Time!"

Withdrawal symptoms of nicotine can be very potent and include: Anxiety, tension, impatience, irritability, anger, restlessness, increased appetite, difficulty concentrating, depression, disorientation, headaches, nausea and sometimes vomiting, ectopic beats (heart palpitations), brachycardia (decreased heart rate), dizziness, shakiness, energy loss, sleeplessness etc.

Withdrawal symptoms can become apparent after only a few hours and can last for several weeks to a month during smoking cessation Most withdrawal symptoms last between 3-4weeks. However, some studies have shown that they can last as long as 10 weeks or more.

I would give it some more time to see if these resolve. I bet that they do! If not let's see what else we can suggest to help you out:)
177337 tn?1310063499
Congrats on quitting smoking after 22 years.  That is wonderful.
I'm sure you are still in widrawal because I had a friend that went through the same thing for almos 2 months.  Hang in there!

By the way, what were the reasons that the acupuncturist told you to cut dairy out of your diet?  Why would this contribute to pvc's?  Just curious as I eat greek fat free yogart every night and cereal with non fat milk every other day.  Is this not good for pvc's???
753647 tn?1233868481
Thanks so much for the great information, I will give it some time and try not to let it stress me out.

As for the dairy, I don;t know why, but I did do some searching about it, and did find some sources that claim dairy is a large contributor to heart disease, and some that said that a lactose allergy can cause heart palpitations. When I looked back at my food history, I could see that the palpitations started right around the same time frame that I started eating a bowl of cereal every morning, instead of skipping breakfast as I had been doing. So, now I eat other things for breakfast, but I do avoid dairy as much as possible. On those rare occasions that I slip and eat pizza, I start having bad palpitations as early as twenty minutes after I eat and sometimes lasting the entire next day.
703870 tn?1273028242
Just by chance, and for advice for you to remain nicotine free is to make sure you induce twice as less caffeine as you would normally consume.  Nicotine naturally metabolizes caffeine which could be a reason that you are experiencing a faster heart rate when not expecting one.  I did lots of research on the internet to finally kick the habit and that is one key factor in successfully quitting.  Zach
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