Keep Your Heart Cool While You Exercise
Mr. Crawford recommends exercising in the cooler morning or evening hours to minimize thermal stress, as well as these other tips for safer hot weather exercise:
- Slow down on hot, humid days. Reduce your exercise pace on hot days with high humidity. If the temp is above 80 degrees and humidity above 80 percent, its best to postpone your activity until it cools off.
- Keep extra-hydrated if exercising more than 30 minutes. Drink 8 to 12 ounces of water 20 to 30 minutes before exercise, plus 6 to 12 ounces more every 30 minutes of exercise to prevent dehydration.
- Wear heat-appropriate clothing. Dont wear clothing like rubber suits or long-sleeved sweat-suits that prevent sweat evaporation and interfere with your bodys ability to cool itself. Wear loose-fitting cotton T-shirts, shorts and a brimmed hat while exercising outside.
Read Also: How Accurate Is Fitbit Charge 2 Heart Rate
Anxiety And Heart Attack Recovery
Anxiety disorders come with a high degree of fear and uncertainty. When this fear and certainty keeps the heart attack or heart disease patient from following the advice and treatment plan of their cardiologist, it can have a major impact on recovery. Anxiety can interfere with:
- Sticking to prescribed exercise regimens
- Taking prescribed medications
- Following through with a healthy diet
- Getting a proper amount of quality sleep
- Reconnecting with friends and family
- Confidently resuming job career and family responsibilities
Problems Fighting Off Germs
Your body may not beat back infections so well when you worry. Even just thinking about something that made you angry or sad can lessen the response of your immune system — the body’s defense against germs — in as little as 30 minutes. Anxiety that stretches over days, months, or years can take an even bigger toll on the immune system, making it harder for you to fight the flu, herpes, shingles, and other viruses.
Read Also: What Foods To Eat To Reduce Anxiety
How To Slow Your Heart Rate Down From Anxiety
If youre one of the 40 million American adults who deal with an anxiety disorder, you may have experienced a racing heart as a result.
Unfortunately, its a side effect of one of the more common anxiety disorders, Generalized Anxiety Disorder .
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, if you have a hard time controlling your anxiety a majority of the time over a period of six months, you have GAD.
But just because an elevated heart rate is one of the common symptoms of anxiety, it doesnt mean its not scary. In fact, when you notice this side effect, it could make you feel even more anxious.
Keep reading for ways to slow down your rapid heart rate. But first, find out why it happens.
Fight Or Flight Response
It’s a set of symptoms you get when you react to something scary. Your fright triggers the release of certain hormones that send signals through your brain, spinal cord, and nerves. Blood and fuel floods to your arms and legs to prepare to meet the threat with one of two options: fight or run away. Your pulse and breathing speed up. You also might get sweaty and shaky.
Read Also: How To Overcome Separation Anxiety
Guard Your Heart: Addressing The Relationship Between Anxiety And Heart Disease
Recent studies are investigating the complex relationshipbetween anxiety and heart disease. Not only does anxiety and depression appearto be prevalent in patients with cardiovascular disease, but evidence suggeststhat anxiety could also be the cause of negative long-term effects on hearthealth, which could eventually lead to heart disease.
Why Is My Heart Beating Fast But Im Calm
Many times, fast or irregular heartbeats are caused by normal life situations, like drinking too much caffeine or having anxiety. But if you notice that your heart is beating quickly a lot, you should consider seeing a cardiologist to make sure you dont have a dangerous, undiagnosed heart condition.
Recommended Reading: How Does It Feel To Have Anxiety
Slow Heartbeat And Anxiety
If you suffer from anxiety symptoms generally and you also have what appears to be a slow heart rate, it is entirely possible that the two are related.
The causes of slow heart rate in the case of anxiety are not entirely clear. However, here are some possible causes:
Stop Checking Your Pulse
You should see a doctor if you’re concerned about a low heart rate. But once the doctor rules out medical symptoms, you need to stop checking your pulse unless instructed to do so by a doctor. Persistent pulse checking is a symptom of anxiety, and it’s a symptom that serves to fuel and reinforce your existing anxiety problem.
This behavior is self-sustaining. For example, when you check your pulse multiple times a day, you’ll never be satisfied with a normal result. You’ll instead keep checking until you finally have the anomaly you’ve been waiting for, which will then reinforce the idea that you need to keep checking your pulse constantly.
On the other hand, every time you check your pulse and you see that its normal, this gives you a bit of a buzz, temporarily alleviating your anxiety and giving you a sense that everything is ok. That positive feeling reinforces not just the pulse taking, but also the anxiety that precedes the pulse-taking. Youll soon find yourself becoming anxious and taking your pulse again, allowing the cycle to repeat.
In either case, the take-home message is that repeatedly checking your pulse is not a helpful behaviour.
Why Is Pulse High
Heart rates that are consistently above 100, even when the person is sitting quietly, can sometimes be caused by an abnormal heart rhythm. A high heart rate can also mean the heart muscle is weakened by a virus or some other problem that forces it to beat more often to pump enough blood to the rest of the body.
Don’t Miss: What Causes Social Anxiety Disorder
Q: Are There Different Types Of Anxiety Disorders
A: Yes, there are many different anxiety disorders.
- Generalized anxiety is probably the most common. People with generalized anxiety get overly anxious about a wide variety of everyday things.
- There is also social anxiety, which is more of a performance-based anxiety. I see social anxiety a lot in high performers, CEOs and other professionals.
- Panic disorders cause people to have panic attacks. Sometimes these intense episodes of fear have certain triggers and sometimes they don’t.
- Phobia disorders occur when very specific things cause anxiety, such as a fear of heights or spiders. You can also have anxiety about a medical condition youre facing. For example, if you’ve had heart attack, your fear of having another heart attack may be so intense that it disrupts your life.
What Is The Outlook For People With Heart Palpitations And Anxiety
Many people have heart palpitations caused by situational anxiety. You can use relaxation strategies to successfully manage this anxiety. These strategies can slow down your heart rate in the moment.
If you have heart palpitations caused by chronic anxiety disorders, there is hope. You can also manage your anxiety with proper treatment. A good team of healthcare providers can help you build a coping strategy.
If you suspect another health condition is causing palpitations with or without anxiety talk to your provider about treatment. To relieve your symptoms, your provider will treat the cause. You may also benefit from anxiety-relieving therapies.
Read Also: What Drugs Help With Anxiety
Ways To Reduce Stress
Relaxation techniques such as meditation, mindfulness and controlled breathing are also quite successful for many people. Beyond that , here are some other popular activities and behaviors people engage in to relieve stress:
- Spend quality time with friends and family, and laugh
- Listen to soothing music
- Write in a journal, in particular express feeling of gratitude
- Practice yoga
How To Treat Anxiety
There are many different ways you can help yourself if you suffer from anxiety. GPs run a scheme called Reading Well Books on Prescription which gives you free access to books that might help. Its important to take good care of your physical health and to try and manage your worries. A way to do this might be to dedicate a particular time of the day to focus on what is worrying you or to write your worries in a notebook or on pieces of paper and put them in a jar. That way, they are not going round and round in your head. Simple breathing exercises can help with anxiety as taking slow, deeper breaths can calm the bodys stress response. Mindfulness and meditation can be helpful ways to cope with anxiety.
You May Like: Can Anxiety Cause Brain Fog
How You Can Lower Heart Rate From Anxiety
When you’re having a panic attack, the Anxiety and Depression Association of America says it’s common to experience chest pain and palpitations as a response to your heart rate increasing. In fact, a panic attack is often mistaken for a heart attack.
In people with diagnosed anxiety, Isaacson says that the first step is to treat the underlying anxiety, which can be done through cognitive behavioral therapy , medications such as antidepressants, or a combination of the two.
In addition to CBT, several other methods may help manage heart rate and palpitations. Not only can these interventions help lower your heart rate at the moment, but they can also teach you how to manage your anxiety over time, potentially reducing your risk of cardiovascular disease.
Q: Could Symptoms Of Anxiety Signal An Underlying Medical Condition Not A Mental Health Issue
A: Absolutely. If your blood sugar drops too low, it can cause you to sweat and feel shaky, which may be confused with anxiety. If your thyroid gland is overactive, you can sweat excessively and feel restless and nervous. These symptoms could be mistaken for anxiety.
Irregular heartbeats and tachycardia, which is increased heart rate, can also present as an anxiety disorder. Dehydration often looks like anxiety because it increases heart rate and can make you feel lightheaded or dizzy. For women, hormonal imbalances can trigger anxiety as well as mood swings, insomnia and depression.
If you’re having symptoms of anxiety, please get a medical workup because it could be an actual physical condition that needs treatment. Don’t just assume it’s anxiety. Look for the medical cause first.
You May Like: How Many People Have Anxiety Disorder
Q: Do Anxiety Disorders Also Cause Physical Symptoms
A: If you have normal anxiety, your heart rate may pick up. You could get a little sweaty and have a bit of an upset stomach. When it starts crossing over into pathological anxiety, you might start having more headaches. You could also develop symptoms that resemble irritable bowel syndrome , such as diarrhea, nausea and vomiting.
Different Types Of Anxiety Disorder
Anxiety disorders fall into several categories. Here are a few of them:
- Panic disorder can be associated with cardiac disease or mistaken for heart attack. Feelings of extreme agitation and terror are often accompanied by dizziness, chest pains, stomach discomfort, shortness of breath, and rapid heart rate.
- Post-traumatic stress disorder a condition that can follow a shocking or frightening incident or sudden, life-threatening event such as a violent crime, major accident, or heart attack. A person suffering from PTSD often has trouble dealing with anything associated with the incident that caused their condition, and experiences feelings of jitteriness and detachment.
- Obsessive-Compulsive disorder People with OCD will manage unreasonable thoughts and worries by performing the same actions over and over. For example, an individual obsessed with perceived cardiovascular symptoms that have been checked and cleared by a physician may compulsively research them or find new ones for hours on end.
You May Like: What To Do During An Anxiety Attack
A Different View Of Tachycardia
Think of it this way. Anxiety is an indicator of stress. Tachycardia is part of that stress signal. Where do you think all your worry, fear, and stress goes? It certainly doesnt evaporate into the ether. Instead, those negative emotions are manifested in your body.
But that in no way means that your rapid heart beat is set to kill you. It just means that youre affected by your emotional experiences. Stress and anxiety are charged, live wire, reactions to months or even years of internal strife. Your heart is reacting to that discord.
The other piece is that your past experience already tells you that a fast heart beat isnt the killer you think it is. How many times have you experienced a rapid heart rate? And of those times how many ended in injury or death? None right?
So really what youre dealing with is the anticipation of something awful happening and not with what is likely to happen.
That doesnt mean that your fearful assumptions arent powerful. They can be strong.
This, however, doesnt change the fact that stress triggers tachycardia in the same way, every time. Its an old dog with no new tricks. The challenge is to learn how to sit with that reality and accept it when its happening.
That will take practice and a certain level of courage, but whats the alternative?
If you havent gone to your doctor then go get screened. Twice if it makes you feel better. After that though, you need to get your mind focused on stress reduction and not anxiety symptoms.
Q: At What Point Does Anxiety Start To Become A Problem
A: Anxiety becomes a problem when its debilitating and taking over your life. When it shifts from being something that motivates you to take an extra step in life to something that keeps you from moving forward. Anxiety is a problem when its interfering with your life and no longer helping you prepare for it.
Recommended Reading: Why Do I Have Such Bad Anxiety In The Morning
Have A Constant Feeling Of Danger Your Chest Hurts Your Heart Beats Too Fast And You Can’t Catch Your Breath You Could Be Having An Anxiety Attack
While we all agree that confinement is one the most important weapons in stopping the spread of the Coronavirus , it has also brought with it costs to the emotional and mental wellbeing of many people around the world.
An Arrhythmia is a disturbance in the heart’s rhythm resulting from the electrical impulses that properly, synchronously and rhythmically coordinate the heart’s beats not working correctly. This causes the heart to beat too fast, too slow or irregularly.
Types of Arrhythmias:
Tachycardia: Occurs when there is a resting heart rate greater than 100 beats per minute.
Bradycardia: Occurs when the resting heart rate is less than 60 beats per minute.
It is important to point out that during exercise it is normal to have a high heart rate and at bedtime and to remain in a state of the deep relaxation it is usual for the heart rate to be slower, so don’t be alarmed – not all tachycardia or bradycardia means you have heart disease.
Symptoms of Arrhythmias:
Fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat
Shortness of breath or difficulty in breathing
Chest fluttering sensation
Relationship between Arrhythmia and Anxiety:
There is a close relationship between Anxiety disorders and Arrhythmias.
Tips for Managing Stress and Anxiety
Establish daily disconnect schedules
Learn to breathe properly to relax
Keep a routine
Keep in touch with your family and friends
It will save lives!
Get vaccinated against COVID-19 and protect yourself against the Omicron variant.