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Heart Health, Cardiology: Preventing Palpitations - Anxiety & Panic  Previous Next

Preventing Palpitations - Anxiety & Panic

by: Joanne King

Over 90% of Anxiety and Panic sufferers report sensations of palpitations.

Palpitations are a fast heart rate that you can feel beating in your chest. They feel extremely unpleasant and are quite frightening. Often the first time people experience palpitations they believe they might be having a heart attack or dying.

There are certain things you can do to reduce the likelihood of these palpitations from happening.

Here are the 6 Preventative ways to avoid palpitations;-

1. Don’t smoke
2. Avoid Alcohol
3. Avoid Caffeine
4. Avoid Drugs
5. Proper sleep
6. Eat healthy

Owning a heart rate monitor, I did a little personal testing of my own. And here are the results over a period of weeks;-

Abiding by the 6 Preventatives my resting heart rate is: 68 beats per minute.

Breaking rule #6 - Adding junk food to my diet, mostly fast food – burgers - pizzas, chips, chocolate my resting heart rate jumped to 85 beats per minute.

Breaking rule #5 – Slept for 5 hours – Resting heart rate went up to 83 beats per minute.

Breaking rule #3 – Drank 2 cups of coffee – Heart rate went up to 87 beats per minute.

Breaking rule #1 – Smoked 1 cigarette – Resting heart went to 90 beats per minute.

Breaking rules #1 & #2 & #5 & #6 – Had 4 hours sleep the night before, smoked a couple of cigarettes, had 2 alcoholic beverages and ate half a pizza – Resting heart rate jumped to a staggering 130 beats per minute. That’s nearly twice my usual resting heart rate. The following day abiding by all 6 preventatives my resting heart rate still sat at 100 beats per minute.

I do NOT engage in illegal activities under any circumstances, so no experimentation done on rule #4. However, I’m sure it stands to reason “why” it will increase your heart rate and often responsible for users experiencing major panic attacks.

There are other certain pharmaceutical medications you can avoid that are known to increase your heart rate as well. Sudafed is one. Also some types of nasal decongestants can cause an increase in your heart rate.

If you experience palpitations regularly, perhaps speak to your doctor and ask him/her for a list of medications to avoid. When visiting your pharmacy for over the counter medications, cold and flu etc. you can let your pharmacist know that you experience palpitations and would prefer something that does not contain any ingredients that may potentially increase your heart rate.

What to do when palpitations rear their ugly head…

Firstly, sit down. Let someone around you know that you are experiencing palpitations.

One method you can use that can often make them disappear is; placing 2 to 3 fingers on your neck where you feel your pulse, just on one side of your neck. Then massage the area.

If they persist or you feel dizzy, light headed or chest pain, seek medical attention. Don’t worry about looking like a “goof” because you’re practically on a first name basis with the emergency room. Chances are, it is just a panic attack however it is better to be on the safe side.

“Skipped Beats”

I actually experienced a lot of these. It would feel like a pause in my heart beat then one strong thud of a heart beat would follow. When I wore the 24 hour holter monitor I felt 2 of these sensations.

Both sensations coincided with an “ectopic” beat. My cardiologist informed me that almost everyone has this and is harmless.

By standing by the 6 preventatives, you can also reduce this “skipped beats” sensation.

Stay Safe & Take Good Care of your Mind & Body

Note: Never self diagnose.Make sure you visit your local GP first. All material provided is for informational or educational purposes only. No content is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Consult your doctor regarding the applicability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to your symptoms or medical condition.

© Joanne King - http://www.anxiety-panic-free.com

About the Author - Joanne King is a former sufferer of Anxiety & Panic Attacks. She is the author of two books "How to Overcome Anxiety & Panic Attacks" & "How to Overcome Anxiety When Approaching Women" She has helped other sufferers Worldwide to eliminate their Anxiety & Panic. http://www.anxiety-panic-free.com

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