Signs and Symptoms
1. Rapid heart rate.
2. An uneasy, persistent awareness of your heartbeat.
3. A thumping, fluttering, pounding, or racing beat in your chest.
4. Shortness of breath, chest pain, light-headedness, or fainting.
5. Slow heart rate.
What to Do Now
If you experience frequent or severe palpitations, call a doctor for an immediate appointment.
When to Call A Doctor
1. If you notice an unusual heartbeat and feel light-headed or dizzy.]
2. If you have irregular heartbeats that are intense, painful, or more than fleeting.
3. If you have fainting spells.
4. If you are taking drugs your doctor has prescribed for palpitations and you notice a new, irregular heartbeat pattern; or you have nausea, vomiting, fainting, diarrhea, or rashes.
How to Prevent It
1. Eliminate caffeine from your diet (i.e., coffee, tea, chocolate, and caffeinated soft drinks).
2. Don’t drink alcoholic beverages, and don’t take decongestants, diet pills, or stimulant drugs such as cocaine or amphetamines.
3. Don’t smoke.
4. Get regular exercise, such as brisk walking, jogging, swimming, or bicycling, to help regulate your resting heart rate.
5. Find a healthy outlet for stress. Try deep breathing, mediation, yoga.
6. Eat balanced, low-fat meals. Your doctor may also suggest mineral supplements; calcium, magnesium, and potassium that help moderate the heartbeat.