Anxiety is an abnormal sense of fear, apprehension and nervousness resulting from anticipation of future event or situation. Anxiety and heart palpitations often come side by side.
Anxiety is characterized by cognitive, somatic, behavioral, and emotional components. Of particular relevance, somatic component relates to the elevation of blood pressure and heart rate when facing a frightening situation. An elevated blood pressure and heart rate may lead to skipped heartbeats or heart palpitations, which are accompanied by sweating, nausea, chest pain and breathlessness.
Common signs and symptoms of anxiety include hot flashes, sweating, insomnia, headache, heart palpitations, chest pain, breathlessness, trembling, tingling, difficulty swallowing, abdominal discomfort, frequent urination, dread, confusion, uneasiness, insecurity, obsessive behaviors and fear of madness
These anxiety symptoms often develop slowly and can range vastly in number, severity, and frequency from person to person. When the signs and symptoms of anxiety extend for a prolonged period because of a number of reasons, you may have developed an anxiety disorder.
Anxiety and heart palpitations
Heart palpitations, shortness of breath and chest pain are amongst the most distressing anxiety signs and symptoms felt by anxiety sufferers. This is because the combination symptoms of heart palpitations, shortness of breath and chest pain is very similar to a heart attack. Your body is quivering and shaking, your mouth goes dry, your heart is pounding, and worse, you may feel like you are dying of a heart attack.
Shortness of breath is triggered by exaggerated nerve impulses, heart palpitations are caused by the releasing of adrenaline into the blood stream, while chest pain is a result of muscle tension. Fortunately, in many cases, symptoms of breathlessness, chest pain, and heart palpitations from anxiety often are harmless and do not signal a health concern.
However, heart diseases, neurosis, arrhythmia, hyperthyroidism, certain drugs (like anti-depressants) all can cause heart palpitations. Thus, it is necessary to make certain the causes of your heart palpitations and associated symptoms before assuming them as symptoms of anxiety. If you experience heart palpitations along with additional symptoms, such as dizziness, fainting, chest pain or shortness or breath, you should consult with your medical provider.
Heart palpitations caused by anxiety can be reduced with anxiety drugs. But do remember, drugs are not the long term solution instead you need to work out on the real cause of your anxiety in the first place. See a therapist if you don’t know what is causing your anxiety. A therapist can also help you to sort things out.
It is common to have heart palpitations accompanied by breathlessness and chest pain during an anxiety attack. Try to relax a little. Do deep breathing and relaxation exercises to alleviate these unpleasant symptoms. Avoid caffeine, alcohol, tobacco and illicit drugs which can increase heart palpitations.
There are certain personality traits we have and many common events that work together in triggering anxiety. With the combination of regular exercise, proper diet, therapy, medication and meditation, you should be able to overcome your anxiety and associated anxiety signs and symptoms including heart palpitations from anxiety.