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Anxiety Support
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Fells like my heart stops when I'm falling asleep..

I am extremely hyper-vigilant about my heart (no idea why) but I can't take it anymore. I have been to my regular Physician many many many times and 6 years ago, I was diagnosed with severe anxiety and panic attack disorders. I have had numerous EKG's, halter monitors (24 hour ones and once one I had to wear for a month), blood tests, chest xrays, etc. I have recently gone to see a cardiologist to get some answers and he told me I was perfectly healthy. Even hearing a doctor who specializes in Cardiology didn't help. Nothing is helping me - I'm actually going to have an echocardiogram done tomorrow morning and even feel like I won't make it until then because today, when I was trying to fall asleep, I get woken up to this feeling of my heart skipping a beat. What will it take to make this all stop? I'm sick of feeling like I'm constantly checking my pulse and feeling like I'm going to die. Even when my TMJ flares up, I convince myself I'm having a heart attack! Someone help me end this vicious cycle!

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I have been struggling with the same issue. I've had 4 ekgs one of them was a 24h one. All came back normal. Had a CT scan, normal. Blood work, normal. I'm so obsessed with checking my pulse or looking at my Fitbit. Anytime my heart rate gets anywhere near 100 I freak out a little, but then at night I get scared when it gets too close to 50. Both are totally normal by the way. I've even stopped working out bc I'm too afraid of my heart racing. Im going to therapy so I hope that helps put an end to all this madness.

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I've started going to a counselor but for some reason, she isn't talking about anything related to any of this. She talks about my marriage constantly! Nothing even related to how I'm mentally exhausted from all this worrying. What kind of therapy are you doing?! I'm up for trying anything to make this stop or help me realize that there is nothing wrong.

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We talk about my health anxiety with my therapist but also about past traumas because she thinks it stems from my past. We will be doing CBT and EMDR

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What is CBT and EMDR?! I would love more information on that! My therapist doesn't even touch base about my health anxiety.. it makes me so mad!

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Cognitive behavioral therapy and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. Both are a form of therapy. Have you tried bring up the subjects you want to talk about? My therapist always asks about how I'm feeling and all that.

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Yes, I have tried and she always goes back to my marriage which is not causing my health anxiety. I'll have to bring those up to her and see if she has heard of them and practiced them! I just want to feel better.

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Jaymrene, Something is causing your health anxiety. The therapists try to figure out the cause and focus on the reason. Once that is addressed, the health anxiety symptoms will go away. It can also be caused by something in your childhood. Overprotection can be one aspect. Anxiety doesn't come from no where. Maybe it's tucked away deep inside your psyche and one day it surfaces because of a stimulus that activates that memory. The therapist doesn't want to keep talking about your symptoms, you get no where doing that. Looking into other techniques is a good idea if you feel talking sessions aren't working. By all means bring up some suggestions. My best.

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Could my anxiety be causing the feeling I have though when I'm falling asleep? I have some ideas as to what caused this but it's just becoming overwhelming at this point. I have a meeting with her this week and will mention something to my therapist! Thank you!

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Jaymrene, having had multiple tests from a cardiologist should relief some of your worry. I know how difficult that can be. We tend to doubt the doctor's knowledge. He's gone through years of training and specializing and yet we hear or read something in the news and all that is wiped out.

We need to learn to trust again and accept what we are told by our care providers. If not, this vicious fear cycle keeps going round and round. You are not any different then the rest of us who started out with concentration on our heart and pulse. The more you focus in on it, the worse the beat seems to become. I hope you get the help you need with your therapist to overcome the heart anxiety. Really work with her, accept what she is saying and one day, like me, it will all make sense and you will overcome your anxiety.

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What you just said made me feel so much better. Thank you so much! I'll admit, I have got better dealing with my anxiety but I still have my days. I am sure though that one day, I will get past this.. it's just a matter of when!

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50 is actually a great resting heart beat . 100 is when your moving around some .. sounds healthy to me . You have to remember when you think the worst your body will react to the mind and protect the area's you think that are going disarray. Stop and try to do some self talk think better things . Those heart beats were prob the same before you got a fit bit and before you got anxiety you just now pay attention to it more . .

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Thank you! I'm getting much better about it. I know those rates are perfectly normal but you know how anxiety is. Thanks for your response and reassurance though :)

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I did the cardiology thing (echo, stress, halter) and had all the same symptoms as you. I am completely preoccupied with my heart and literally taking my pulse all day. Cardiologist said all is just fine, I do have a very slow resting heart (52-57) and they cannot give me any Betas for palps because drops into 40s while I sleep...TERRIFYING to me but cardiologist said totally fine...uggggg Wish I could go back 2 years before this all started. Hang in there!! xo

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I'm back to my old self again, thank God! It was a rough 3 months for me. I've been going to therapy since January and have learned to just accept the anxiety and the symptoms. They try to creep in sometimes but I have to stop and remind myself that it's totally normal and that I am not in any danger. I'm also taking a magnesium citrate powder called Natural Calm. My palps are gone :) anxiety makes us over sensitized. The less attention we pay to the symptoms the less frequent they become. Someone once told me "ignore it and it (anxiety) will get bored" sounds stupid but it works lol best of luck to you! We CAN overcome this!

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Please make sure your diet is complete with magnesium and potassium. Potassium you can get from eating avocados, bananas or/and drinking coconut water and more. Magnesium, from taking 20 min Epson Salt (magnesium sulfate ) baths or just soaking your feet in a bucket. High magnesium foods include dark leafy greens, nuts, seeds, fish, beans, whole grains, avocados, yogurt, bananas, dried fruit, dark chocolate, and more

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I do take Magnesium and Vitamin D supplements everyday but I will definitely have to try an Epson Salt bath! That sounds nice and relaxing!

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Unfortunately, most vitamins and mineral supplements have very low absorbtion level, like 3%. The rest is just extreted. Absolutely best way is to get it from quality leafy greens, vegetables and fruits. For magnesium soaking is great. You can do it 3 times a week.

Anxiety is very tricky to resolve. Most go about it the wrong way. We fight it. We resolve to get rid of it. We hate all the symptoms and look for quick ways to rid of them. We focus on illness, although as such anxiety is not. Anxiety is a garden variety of symptoms that stay, come and go, intertwine with new symptoms, and morph to orhers. It seems like we have no choice but to focus on the crazy symptoms that only other people with anxiety understand. The key is to focus on health, wholesome life and wholesome activities. To rid of unhealthy habits. Check Art of Living Foundation for a basic Happiness Course. You will learn ways to diffuse and rid yourself of years of mind garbage. Cheers

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Thank you so much and I will definitely check into that course! I have recently learned to face my anxiety head on though and it does seem to be helping.

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OK , well I used to go threw that as well . When you focus on a part of your body when you have anxiety the mind will send signals to that spot and try to protect it . Which will make beat faster . It's fight or flight mode your body goes into . If your Dr says your heart is OK then you need to train your mind to tell it's self that every time you think other wise . So u would self talk yourself down from thinking the worst about your heart . Say it with me "MY HEART IS JUST FINE" I get weird things going on to when I dose off to sleep . I wrote about it on my profile . . But with you saying your heart feels like it stops when you sleep is probably not happening . If your sleeping how would you know it's stopping? And if you feel palvataions it could be esophagus spasms . Anxiety and panic can make us feel alot of things we would normally pass off as simple aches and pains but we have to much adrenaline built up in our brain that we feel everything in our body's and when it releases we think the worst because our minds go into flight mode to protect the body and things that we think are wrong so it over works itself . So your more alive then ever when then happens . You can not die from anxiety even tho you tell yourself you are going to or think it . But you can't . . I know that you are OK . And that you have to work on some self calming talking and know that you are going to be OK. Heart test are pretty serious they are not going to miss anything on those test . I hope this helps .

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Thank you so very much! This definitely did help me! The support I am getting on this post is just amazing!

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I just get worried like is my doctor right? Can a halter monitor really see EVERYTHING about my heart? My mind plays tricks on me.

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Thank you sooooo much!

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I'm afraid to fall asleep because every time I try, I feel like either my breathing or heart stop.

I literally get "scared" awake. I'm going to do some research on premature ventricle contractions.

I have left ventricular heart failure (though not very advanced) so I want to see if that might be a part of the issue.

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I suffer too but I'm trying to ignore it ...tell u what I have started tho and it helps that's multi vitamin tablets daily

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You are describing me.. omg I remember that night I was crying out loud and saying I just want peace of mind and I just want a normal life like others . You are not alone please don't feel alone ! I'm here on this forum right now because today I was feeling left side of my head numbing and that gave me a panic attack . I wanted to take a hot bath but I got afraid if i have a problem in my brain related to blood pressure and going into hot water will make it even worse , I couldn't take bath not even shower . I came to my room and when I was trying to sleep I started waking up gasping for air because I feel like I'm forgetting breathing or my heart stops or something but all these are panic related . I can feel my heartbeats throughout the day on my knees on top of my head my neck my legs my stomach my breast . Sometimes I think I have cancer .. I always look at my wrists to see if my nerves look normal and my blood pressure is okay . I always look in my eyes if they are too bloody and I freak myself out I'm having a brain seizure or something .. all these started after death of my grandparents . Grandma died from brain seizure and grandfather died from lung cancer . I was a happy smoker and did not care anything before . It has been 1.5 years I quitted smoking because of all these fear .. yet nothing is gone .. you are not alone .

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So what happened over one year? Did you get better?

I also have similar feeling. When trying to fall asleep I feel as if my heart stops for a very small moment. It happens when I am breathing out. It's been happening for the last few days. Scary!!!!!

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I know this is an old post but came across it and feel i needed to reply. I went through the almost exact same thing almost 15 years ago. I was constantly checking my pulse thinking my heart would stop at any second and was worse at night. At my worst i was afraid to check my pulse worried i wouldnt feel it or it would be super fast. I constantly tapped my foot or moved something almost to convince myself my heart was still beating and i was still alive. This went on for years for me and thought I couldnt do anything about it. Needless to say when I was a teenager i smoked some weed that was laced with something and from that day I have had bad anxiety. Messed me up pretty bad for life. Anyway I went on for years before I finally went to see a doctor because it was ruining my life. At that point i wouldnt even hardly go out in public. I was put on 25mg of zoloft and was prefectly normal again for 12 years! Just 3 years ago i went up to 50mg because i felt like it was coming back a little. Zoloft has been a godsend to me. I hate taking pills and felt like i didnt need them but boy was i wrong. I now live a happy normal life and never check my pulse anymore and feel a lot calmer. I encourage anyone with anxiety to please try it. I have had no bad side effects. Wish i would have tried medicine sooner. Hope you got yours figured out. God bless

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