Feeling fearful

I am awake (4.30) and my heart is fluttering away as it always does when I lie down ( feels like a lot of uncomfortable ectopics trying to get into AF). I now go into AF around 7pm each night for 2-3 hours then flutter on and off once in bed with some AF at times. I can really feel my heart reacting when i change sides to lie on, or lie flat...like my heart will speed up a bit or i feel a 'gushing' sensation in my chest. I am so glad this is limited to night time but feeling a bit alone tonight and wondering are these bed/ night time phenomena common? I am scared this AF will progress to the daytime eventually and affect my life more, much as i try to live in the present, i am finding it hard tonight not to worry about the future.

19 Replies

  • That doesn't sound nice. Tell your doctor that it is intolerable at nights and ask for a treatment recommendation. Are you taking a beta blocker before you go to bed? You might also consider cognitive behaviour therapy. CBT can help you develop powerful strategies to cope with this condition so that you don't worry so much about it, and at best, that you stop thinking about it. It works! Stay positive -

  • I wrote a reply. It is disappeared.... I just wanted to share that I have this too at night and have noticed certain triggers make it worse like chilled white wine, chocolate, sugar , tea and possibly wheat. Also stress and worry so sometimes taking in 3-5 breathes and the. 4-5 breathes out to create a breathing rhythm . Lavender oil seems to help also. Sleeping right side is better. I am getting tested next week for sleep apnea..... It is very difficult to experience so be kind to yourself. Also seems important to be off the computer early as that agitates the nervous system before bed if you have to you could sleep sitting up in the worst case scenario as people say that works. Best of luck and know there are others in the boat with you

  • I have left 2 replys regarding my own experience but it won't post them.... Just know there are others in the boat with you

  • Please go get help. Advice from doctors for an action plan and as Thomp said.... find methods to alleviate your dis- ease on your side. I know what your feeling snd it feels Like slowly boiling. you are well supported here. take good care


  • Thank you Annie for your words...you are a very calming lady xx

  • Hi,Sorry to hear that you have had a rough night, it always seems worse at night time. I can only lie on my right side. I take Bisoprolol in the morning and at one time I kept going into AF at about 7.00 every evening, my Dr gave me another 1.25mg Bisoprolol at about 5.00 in the evening to carry me over to the next day, that seemed to work. There will be something out there that will work for you. Take care, Pat

  • Thanks Pat...i may ask about a split dose of bisoprolol as i take full dose first thing in the morn

  • Snap - I get the same. Sometimes my heartbeats are so strong it's impossible to sleep. My GP has prescribed me some sleeping tablets for when this happens and gosh don't I need them! Without I'm sure my anxiety would increase which of course can make the problem worse. Why don't you have a chat with your GP and explain what's happening to you and see if he will prescribe something to help you sleep.

    Let us know if you get a solution to your problem. Best wishes.


  • It is good to hear other people identify with this nighttime phemomena. Thank you

  • Hi Vony, I'm sorry that you suffer so badly with this and it is understandable that you should find it scary and worrying. I agree with Thomps, a two pronged approach one to try and minimise your physically symptoms that do give you such trouble and also spend some time working on your coping strategies.

    It saddens me that this condition can reduce anyone of us to despair at times and yet I have personally found that once I revert back to 'me' and my own ways of looking at and dealing with life the outlook improves (even if not much else has). Although it is physically and mentally incapacitating it is no time to passive and finding that inner fight to get back the upper hand in mental control is worth the effort.

    Obviously your medical team should be informed of all your issues and it is their role to help with a treatment plan to minimise symptoms. You have reported dreadful episodes on here and it is clearly more disruptive to your life than many and your team should recognise that and your age and other commitments. A good night's sleep is often the start to getting perspective so make sure they listen and keep trying until they manage this better.

    You are bright as a button, clever and compassionate and you can solve this dilemma, using your wit and support of those around you, including the people on this site, don't lose sight of this in the maelstrom thrown up.

    I'll leave any medical stuff to your team.

    CBT never worked for me though I wouldn't discount trying it (possibly because I was angry as hell when I tried it as referred by GP for my non-existent panic attacks which were my real heart condition). I used most of my sessions venting about my GP (lesson learnt I now deal with the real issue). I read a really interesting article about 'negative' emotions psychologytoday.com/article... There are as many ways of dealing with the emotional issues as there are people but there are good, interesting and fun things to try to face it head on or distract yourself whatever your preference. Be guided by your personality, take what is useful to you from others and continue to ask for real practical help from your medical team and emotional support from your friends (here and elsewhere) and family.

    I wish you well getting the upper hand, look it in the eye and simply shout, enough is enough (Donna Summer). Tea, the internet, music (and ear phones), a V pillow and a good book can be better companions in the middle of the night than fear, I've had to write myself a few stern texts in the early hours about how it's solving nothing. Whatever tomorrow brings today is for celebrating. I hope you are feeling better now morning is here and that you are not too tired.

    Keep well.


  • Another great post from Jo, but can I completely agree with her about the power of just writing things down.

    From the angry outbursts of frustration to the self pitying exclamations just writing them down actually literally feels like getting them out of your system. I highly recommend it.

    Be well


  • Vony - bigs hugs and sympathy - you are not alone but at 4.30 in the morning it surely feels that way! So many of us have been there too.

    I remember you saying that you had had an ablation recently, so perhaps you need to contact your EP and get help to settle your heart down.

    Best wishes xx

  • I sympathise with your nighttime fears, every little thing becomes massive when alone and in the dark! I put on my bedside touch lamp which dims to a gentle low light, make a nice hot drink, Ribena is a favourite, sit up comfortably with lots of pillows, then fall asleep over a good book is my recipe to cope when it all gets too much!

    Good luck, we all have to develop our own strategies for survival in the small hours!

    Just think how many of us there are doing these strategies when you're awake and worrying, and you'll know you're not alone.

  • Just a thought, but have you wondered if you are out of rhythm in the day as well but you just dont notice it. Have you had a monitor? As for sleeping pills, I have to go to work in the morning (am off sick AGAIN today) and find it impossible to do my job after taking one.

  • Vony,

    I have never in my life believed more in the Mind-Body connection as I do now with AF and Panic attacks that was paralyzing my life. Direct intervention via medical is called for. I have taught myself that, *Just because I think it so, or possible, does not make it true. Let go of the fear and the what ifs. Best wishes.

  • You are not alone Vony. I can ditto what others have said. I too had a fearful time of my heart being worse at night, not able to sleep due to the thumping, being propped up, and so so tired the next day. I would do deep slow breathing to help fix my mind on something else and to calm me. Somehow its sorted itself out. Fingers crossed X.

    Wishing you well.

  • That sounds like me. I have to have very small meals, and make up for it by grazing during the day, otherwise around 7 in the evening my ticker will start playing up. And when I go to bed I could only sleep on my right. No chance at all of sleeping on the left, and sometimes might manage on my back but not often. Also, completely no alcohol for me, that would start me off as well, but usually later, middle of the night, so went teetotal a year ago.

    I'm on drugs now which have stopped it all, but I can still feel it trying to start if I eat anything approaching a normal sized meal.


  • I feel so inspired and thankful for all these replies and the wonderful advice included in all of them. Thank you so much. i rang my EP's secretary on Fri morning and have had my appt brought forward from the 20th Feb to the 6th..so less than 2 weeks now. Night time is definitely a more symptomatic time for me, which doesn't seem uncommon here and the writing down of fears and all the lovely suggestions as to alternatives to fear in the dead of the night, I shall certainly put into practise. Thank you all so much...i actually felt less isolated having just posted on this forum the other night. The support on here is precious...

  • It's really mince, it just ruins your life I really hope they come up with a cure!

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