Starting to think I might have been in AF a lot more than I thought

After joining here last week , I think I have definitely been in AFib more than I think I have . I didn't realize that AFib isn't just a heart rate over 140 !!! So many times I have been woken up through the night with a fast but steady heart rate. My resting pulse is 51bpm so when it moves up a notch I notice it . Some times it goes up to 87 to 100bpm and I have held my breath to get it down again . Does this sound like PAF ?? πŸ€” this has only ever happened while I was sleeping but it has woken me . I remember a few years back my cardiologist asked me after a 2 week monitor, what I was doing at 2 o'clock in the morning on this certain date ? She looked a bit concerned but never said anything else . Very interesting to see what people are feeling in AFib as some people I am noticing have different symptoms. When I had my what I thought was first time of AFib last November! It was going fast then slowed down for a few seconds. Then would keep doing this for the 7 hours till it stopped on its own . I can only say it felt like a roller coaster ride . Has anyone had any fast heart rate while sleeping? Any feedback on this would be great. Many thanks .

14 Replies

oldest β€’ newest
  • AF is about fibrillation not just rate. I have a rhythm problem but not really a rate problem. My normal rate is 65ish but in AF it will typically rise to 100. It went to 140 prior to my recent operation but that was unusual for me.

    My EP thought that I was in AF more than I realized and a 7 day monitor proved that he was correct. It picked up an episode on the night of day 4 that I knew nothing about. Many of us wake up in AF ( this is why I take my 2.5 bisoprolol before I go to bed )

    We're all different and we each learn different coping strategies. This site is a major learning facility which has proved invaluable for me.

  • Thanks Jenny i to am now on the 2.5 at night and it's helped a lot . I take 7.5 in the morning as well. Very interesting to read about everything and everyone else and there symptoms. I have joined other Facebook groups but they have a lot of other heart problems, this is a very good forum to chat and get information on as well , hope your well and thanks for the reply πŸ‘πŸΌ appreciate it thanks πŸ’—

  • Hi Sam, my normal resting heart rate is 45' sometimes goes to 35 if I take an extra dose of metropprolol (6 mg, which is so low docs think it has no effect pharmalogucally but I know it does). At 3 a.m. I generally am awakened with a heart rate of 70 to 80 bpm, very disconcerting for me. I do deep breathing exercises -pot slow down my heart - sometimes works, sometimes doesn't. Sometimes, I slowly tap my fingers on my chest and count slowly and believe it or not, it calms things down - perhaps because it diverts me from the anxiety of feeling my heart racing (which makes things worse) by focusing on the tapping and counting. I would stand on my head and spit nickels to get it to slow down if I had to. :)). My great fear when my heart is racing is that it will cause my heart to go into an erratic rhythm so I do everything possible to prevent this - breathing exercises, tapping (EFT), extra bit of metoprolol.

    My cardiologist told me that I have had afib longer than my first identified big episode which landed ne in emergency. I do recall episodes of rapid heart beat and strong palpitations for two years prior to big event if AFib but just took a deep breath, brushed it off as nothing but getting older, and kept going.


  • Aww yes I no we're your coming from , anxiety is my worst friend in all of this . My mammy is 73 and she didn't no she had ectopics till last week when her GP felt her pulse 😳 some of us are so tuned into are heart beats aren't we? I find it all very interesting. I have to travel some weekends to watch my 15 year old lad play football? But if the journey is to far away I won't go with fear of my AFib kicking off . Some people are not bothered by it and don't let it stop them doing anything. However I am one of those that panics on top of it that sends me over the edge !! I am terrified when my heart goes into its own mad beats πŸ’— I always say NOT TODAY HEART ! NOT TODAY 🀚🏼 but it does it anyway 😏 but we are all different and different things set us all off . Thanks for your reply and I hope you are well πŸ’—

  • Thank you, Sam, yes, I am doing much better.

    Unfortunately, fear and anxiety play a big role in AFib. When first diagnosed, i was told by my regular doctor to be aware that not only does AFib have a physical impact on the body but also an emotional impact. And was she ever right. I am almost paralyzed by fear and anxiety when AFib strikes and the anxiety presents itself in many forms.- so much so that it limits my life and impacts those around me. I have discovered that this aspect of AFib is not dealt with by the specialists when really, it is as important as dealing with the physical impact of AFib.

    Peace and contentment

  • Apserlutely spot on πŸ‘ŒπŸΌ all I ever get is don't panic as this won't kill you 😳 O but as we all no a stroke can . So now that's my fear when my heart goes off ! I am thinking omg is this going to kick into AFib again and then I am going to have a stroke πŸ˜₯ then I start thinking about my kids and husband and family and that's it Ime on one and I have to have a word with myself and say ? Come on girl this is not the way to think ?? My husband is so good with me now he noes it's not just anxiety. Before I got diagnosed last November he used to be laid back and just try and calm me down . But after November he was a bit nervous himself as I could see for the first time he was concerned about it as it was going crazy . God love people that live on there own with this condition πŸ˜₯ I honestly don't no how they keep it together!! They are so so brave x

  • O and yes I got a good few before that big one in November. And also after it .

  • I thought a "normal" heart rate was from 60 to 100 bpm, so I don't see why you are concerned if your heart rate goes to 70 or 80 bpm. Also, I don't understand why you would want your heart rate to go down to 35 bpm. I hope you have discussed your low heart rate with your cardiologist.

  • Before I was diagnosed with (probable/possible) paroxysmal AF nearly a year ago I quite often used to have nightmare-ish dreams during which I was endlessly rushing around in an aimless manner. Looking back, I do wonder if those were episodes of a fast heart rate happening whilst I slept. I would wake up feeling shattered.

    Now that I have a confirmed diagnosis and take bisprolol again (reluctantly because of the zombifying side effects when it was initially prescribed) I split the dose in 2 and take the second shortly before I go to bed. Since doing that (with GP approval) I haven't experienced any episodes whilst asleep that I am aware of. I also have an implanted loop recorder and haven't been contacted at all asking about any episodes that they have picked up.

    Whilst some of us have similar experiences we all seem to have our own 'versions' of this condition!

  • Sounds like mine ! And splitting my dose has helped me for now . Thank you for your reply it's very interesting to see how others are while sleeping. Best wishes xπŸ’—

  • AF is ALWAYS irregular. If you have a fast regular heart rate this is tachycardia which can be natural (obviously when you run and need more blood going round) or induced by fear, alarm, shock etc. ) Many people wake from sleep in alarm and this is not AF. You might like to consider talking to your doctor about a sleep test as sleep apnoea is a common trigger/cause for AF.

  • Mmmm that's very interesting bob because since I have put more pillows under my head in bed it's helped me a lot . Plus splitting my beater blocker and taking it at night . I told my husband I don't snore and he laughed and said O yes you do . I calnt lie on my left hand side as they start my ectopics going ,and I am not good on my back . So I tend to sleep turned to the right upwards now , and now all I hear is my husband snoring lol . Thanks again bob I will mention that to my dr on my next vist next week πŸ‘πŸΌ

  • Thank you Bob. I always thought even just a fast heart rate was AFid. My concern is that the fast heart rate will then result in the heart going out of sinus rhythm which mine has done. I think I get very anxious and scared when my heart is beating really fast and thumping in my chest and the anxiety and fear then make it worse and it kicks in the AF. Thus, I am trying different things at 3 a.m. To get the heart to slow down. self-talk therapy, deep breathing exercises, holding my breath and bearing down, EFT or tapping therapy (a distraction type exercise for me). Am becoming more successful in not responding in fear and panic as my heart goes out of kilter a bit.

    Thanks again, Bob.

  • If you are having a lot problems at night it might be good to be checked for sleep Apnea. About 50 percent of people with AFIB also have sleep apnea

You may also like...