Do you have palpitations or syncope?

Do you have palpitations or syncope?

Palpitations are the feeling of an irregular heartbeat or simply a skipped beat. The main cause behind it is arrhythmias or stress or anxiety.  Arrhythmia is a situation of an irregular heart rhythm and it is common among people especially in older people. Some types of arrhythmias are harmless but some types are extremely dangerous. Most arrhythmic patients doesnot have thep sensations of palpitations. But some arrhythmias like atrial fibrillation, sinus tachycardia, ventricular tachycardia cause palpitations. Palpitations associated with syncope are considered as harmfully more serious.

For arrhythmias which extend for a long duration have more serious symptoms like:

  • Fainting (syncope) or near-syncope
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Collapse and sudden cardiac arrest
  • Lightheadedness
  • Rapid heartbeat

Complications of arrhythmia

Arrhythmia will lead to…

  • Stroke
  • Heart failure
  • Sudden cardiac arrest
  • Alzheimers

Our daily intakes may also lead to palpitations or syncope

  • Caffeine
  • Cold and cough medications
  • Alcohol
  • Appetite suppressants
  • Tobacco
  • Psychotropic drugs
  • Beta-blockers for high blood pressure
  • Cocaine

These substances enhance the chances of affecting arrhythmias.

Tests for diagnosing arrhythmia

The various tests used to diagnose arrhythmia – Holter monitor, Transtelephonic monitor, Treadmill testing, Tilt-Table Test, Electrophysiologic testing, Esophageal electrophysiologic procedure, Echocardiogram etc. These tests are not applicable for daily diagnosis in our busy lifestyle. So it is better to avoid these situations by preventing arrhythmias in advance as per the proverb “Prevention is better than cure”.

Control your risk factors
In association with arrhythmia, one should also take doctors instructions to manage other risk factors such as,

  • Lower  high blood pressure
  • Control cholesterol levels
  • Reduce excess weight
  • Eat a heart-healthy diet
  • Enjoy regular physical activity

Tips to prevent arrhythmia

Sometimes arrhythmia become a threaten to our life because it suppresses the flow of blood to different parts of our body including vital organs. This type of improper blood supply can cause serious damage to the brain, heart and lungs. Therefore it is necessary to take actions to reduce or prevent the risk of arrhythmia.

  • Exercise
  • Give up drinking
  • Quit smoking
  • Cut down on caffeine
  • Be careful with medications
  • Avoid stress
  • Consume more fresh berries
  • Use olive oil
  • Try to eat more beans
  • Snack on nuts
  • Follow a balanced diet
  • Increase omega-3 fatty acids
  • Take your prescribed medications

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