Heart palpitations are feelings or awareness of one’s own heartbeat. They are characterized by fluttering, pounding, racing, or irregular heartbeats. When you have heart palpitations, you may feel as if your heart is beating too quickly, too forcefully, or as if it is missing beats.
Palpitations are common throughout the chest, throat, and neck. Other symptoms may accompany them, such as lightheadedness, dizziness, shortness of breath, chest discomfort, or sweating. Palpitations can be intermittent and transient, or they can linger for an extended amount of time.
While heart palpitations can be frightening, they are usually harmless and do not warrant concern. Many people suffer palpitations on occasion, often during periods of stress, anxiety, or physical effort. In such circumstances, the palpitations normally go away on their own and do not necessitate medical attention.
However, heart palpitations might be a sign of an underlying medical disease that requires treatment in some cases. Palpitations can be caused by a variety of factors, including:
- Arrhythmias: Palpitations can be caused by irregular cardiac rhythms such as atrial fibrillation, ventricular tachycardia, or premature ventricular contractions (PVCs).
- Heart issues, such as heart valve difficulties, coronary artery disease, or cardiac muscle disorders, can all lead to palpitations.
- Stimulants such as coffee, nicotine, or some medications, as well as alcohol or drug usage, can cause palpitations in some people.
- Hormonal shifts during pregnancy, menopause, or thyroid issues can all impact heart rhythm and cause palpitations.
- Anxiety and stress: Emotional stress or anxiety can cause the release of stress hormones, which can cause changes in heart rate and rhythm.
It is critical to get medical assistance if you have concerns about your heart palpitations or if they are accompanied by serious symptoms. Based on your specific situation, a healthcare professional can examine your symptoms, perform required tests, and provide suitable guidance or treatment.