Scared all the time, please can you help - Arrhythmia Alliance

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Scared all the time, please can you help

dani777 profile image

Scared all the time, please can you support a bit... I am 52 years of age. All my life I've suffered anxiety and panic symptoms started in my twenties although not severe back then. I had palpitations from my early twenties but they were never that bad or that often. I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis in 2017 and put on Prednisone in Sept 2018. I am still taking a low dose of it. In March 2019 I started to get really, really bad palpitations - stronger - flutters mostly, that wouldn't just go away straight away, but would last a while, or come and go for hours off and on. It's like torture. I've had a few really bad episodes that I was convinced I was going to die, and every day I worry that will happen. I have cut out caffeine and alcohol, tried to exercise, and it makes no difference. I get palps randomly, at home, when I wake up, before bed, during the day, etc. And after a larger meal. I am scheduled to have several tests done soon to find out what's going on. My mom had heart palps and so did my grandmother. I probably have atrial flutter or atrial fibrillation. Part of me thinks the Prednisone i take for my bowel disease has been the trigger to make this worse. But I just want it to go away. Driving me crazy. I am tired of always being scared and never feeling normal. I limit my lifestyle because of this and I always fear having palps when I am out. I take Magnesium and that also makes no difference. I seem to sleep alot, nap alot where I didn't used to. I also sometimes feel light headed and off balance although I'm not blacking out or anything touch wood. Please can someone reassure me. I need this. x

11 Replies

Hi Dani

What you describe sounds very typical of what we all get with our heart arrhythmia's, but be aware that your fear will feed your abnormal heartbeat and make it worse. When all this starts for us most are afraid, but AF is very unlikely to kill you and as time goes by you just do your best to live with it.

You mention that you've cut out alcohol and caffeine, but have you also cut out all food containing artificial additives and turned to a more plant based diet? This has helped reduce my attacks greatly as has reducing my sugar intake. Artificial sweeteners were a great trigger for my AF and they were hidden in things like so called healthy yogurts, drinks, chewing gum and I even added them to my hot drinks.

What type of magnesium are you taking and are you on any heart medication like anticoagulants or beta blockers etc?


Hello I am 60 and my problems with pvc started when I was 50. I know how you feel.

Anxiety is the problem nr 1 . I finally decided to take antidepressive Paroxat and I feel 100% better. I wish I would take it already 10 years ago . Think about it. Good luck.

Before any of us can even try to help you, you need to go to the hospital, or to a doctor and find out what kind of heart palpitations you're getting. Absent of that, you're not doing yourself any favours, and it will only continue to fuel your anxiety, and it may be doing your harm depending on what is going on. An EKG, a Holter monitor, and an echocardiogram are probably what will transpire once you go to the doctor. After the results of them, you'll have a much better understanding of what's going on and potentially why. But to ignore going to the doctor or the hospital to get some definitive answers is not a wise thing to do. If you suspect you have atrial flutter or atrial fibrillation, then you need to find that out, and depending on what other health issues you have you may be putting yourself in more danger by not being treated properly for it. For example, if you do have atrial fibrillation, and you have high blood pressure or you're a diabetic, you put yourself at a significantly higher risk of stroke by not being on an anticoagulant. These are all things that you can find out by going to the hospital or your doctor and getting some proper tests done. Go get the tests done, especially when you're having these heart palpitations, and then let us know how you're doing. Once we know what you got, it's a lot easier for those of us who have something similar to help you along the way.

Echoing Verinator's advice above - like all of us on here you've come to no harm so far, and they do go away, so do take some comfort in that. But also, if you've not already done so, make it top priority today to arrange for a specialist medical opinion on these changes, and put your mind at rest after a professional has a good look at exactly what your heart is doing during these palps. That in itself should help a lot. They can take into account your current meds and might find something more suitable for your condition.

dani777 profile image
dani777 in reply to Equi-geek

Thank you. You echoed his advice but you did it in a far more polite manner. Again, thanks

I do sympathise with you. I spent years thinking I was dying. I finally had a very bad AF attack, then I knew I was dying, so much so that I rang 999. It reverted soon after arrival at hospital but it set in motion tests and treatment. Today with treatment I only get occasional episodes which are not too severe. If I could write a letter to my younger self, I’d say

1) get to the doctor, start the process and get properly assessed and treated.

2) If you do have AF then you have to stop fighting against it, learn to live with it and keep calm. My episodes are much easier to handle now. My Mantra is “it’s not life threatening”. And it isn’t, because I am on anti coagulates and other medication.

3) if offered anti depressants, try them. They work for me. Other options to consider are counselling or CBT.

4) Get to know your pulse. Don’t get obsessive but take your pulse several times when you feel fine so you know what’s normal for you. Both heart rate and regularity. Once you are familiar with normal then try and quantify it when you feel unwell.

We can be there for you but please, please get some medical attention soon.

My simple advice is to get this checked out,in case it is AF.

Contra21 profile image
Contra21 in reply to HamishBoxer

How does 1 know of they have or could have af

Simple,an ECG will show it or even the fact that you get 100 plus beats per minute at rest.

Though of course it might not be AF,it could be even stress.

See the Dr and have it checked is the easy answer,though AF can come and go and might need a Holter worn for a few days to pick up.

Hope this helps and please keep us posted.

Best regards

i know palpitations feel horrible... trust me. My doc told me to take d ribose, L arginine, and taurine, and mag. I also started taking a low dose of lexapro. that really seems to help the intensity. I wish you well. It's not easy - especially if you are sensitive and it sounds like you are. I am. :)

Well you're not going to die. Well we all are I suppose but I thought come I'm alive when my heart isn't even beating just flooding about? And I was kind of amazed to find out you can be alive and live a life with a mad heart that flabbers and jabbers and twitches and flips and bloops about. I kinda assumed that it should beat and if anythinfnweird happened it was deadly serious. But turns out lots of people have very weird hearts. Lots of things wrong and they live to old age feeling sometimes better and sometimes worse. And that's good to know. I was lucky and magnesium has helped me a lot but only since taking at least 400mg and since you have a digestive issue you may not absorb it very well. There's a brand called wellgaurd and the tablets dissolve so you can digest em better. Might be worth trying. The main thing is to know that however bad you feel at the moment things will improve they just take a lot of time. About 8 years ago I was in a state...had insomnia could sleep through night through, napping all day, exhausted...couldn't lift the damn hoover my arms were so sore joints and my arms would wake up like claws... I had adrenaline rushes and that's when my heart started being abnormally odd. Its always been a bit arythmical but it started to skip beats and generally flop about oddly. It took me a year to fix my sleep it took another to improve my energy it took another to improve the adrenal fatigue it took another to improve my muscles with ups and downs along the way. My heart only got bad last year and that took me some months to figure out that I needed more it takes a long time to get your ducks in a row. I decided about five or six years ago when friends were saying why don't you go back to college...that I would do a degree in the basics...I would focus on getting enough air water food sleep... It did take four years for me to get all that together...and I decided I'd do a PhD or get my masters in taking care of myself... I'm very glad I made that long term commitment because in that time those friends who went back to college or got jobs have ended up with graves disease and hashimotos and other heath issues because they've no looked after their anxiety..they looked for solutions outside job new career new course new car new teeth even... And the anxiety for them has gotten worse and affected their health. So I am really glad that I focused on myself and although some days I still fail to drink enough water or get a decent walk in I have that base line I can go back to..... I seem to have been really lucky with the magnesium working so well and quickly..I was taking it before but just not enough. They used to use magneisum before they used lithium in very high doesages Worth trying to find if you have other things as well low iron can cause palps as well... also things like b deficiencies can contribute to anxiety adrenal fatigue all of that. Just remember its a journey..there's no magic bullet and it can take time to unravel our needs and learn to take good care of ourselves. And some times are just lows and they pass and you get knocked down and feel you'll never get on top of it and then something good happens and things move forward and eventually after 8 years I feel mostly on top of things most of the time. And I notice the warnings quicker. Like if I get stiff or get anxious or something I can get myself on track quicker before I'm in a complete heap. So if I miss sleep or get dehyrsted instead of it taking me a week to sort it I can get it back on track in a few days....and some day I hope I notice before I mess up!! Some day.

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