Palpitations: What to do When Your Heart Skips a Beat

Oct 05, 2022
Palpitations: What to do When Your Heart Skips a Beat
Have you ever felt your heart skip a beat? Heart palpitations happen for various reasons but are scary nonetheless. Read on to find out what to do if you experience your heart racing out of your chest.

Heart palpitations are frightening when they pop up out of the blue. You may feel like it's beating out of your chest, or it might seem like your heart is fluttering. You might be concerned about your health when this phenomenon happens.

The good news is that a medical problem doesn't often cause heart palpitations. Sometimes, they're due to overexertion or certain medications.

If you're feeling vibrations regularly, the Heart Clinic of Hammond team provides you with a peace of mind. Dr. Ghiath Mikdadi and Dr. Farid Zayed are two expert cardiologists who offer modern diagnostic tools to determine if you have to worry about anything.

Understanding heart palpitations

Heart palpitations are a phenomenon that happens when you feel like your heart is either skipping beats, pumping out of your chest, or racing faster than usual. You feel this sensation in your upper body and throat.

Palpitations can pop up at any time, even when you're resting. They can come up when you're at work or doing everyday activities like cooking dinner.

Typically, heart palpitations aren't a severe problem. They're usually due to circumstances other than heart issues. However, heart palpitations are sometimes a sign something more is wrong with your heart.

You can experience heart palpitations at just about any age. They're more prevalent in women than men, especially during pregnancy and menopause.

If you have heart palpitations, it's challenging to find out what's causing them. Unfortunately, they usually don't happen when you're in our office.

What causes heart palpitations?

Sometimes, there's no definitive cause of your palpitations. They can come without enough time to figure out the exact cause.

When you feel your heart skip or pounding in your chest, it may be due to reasons like:

  • Depression
  • Heavy exercise
  • Stress
  • Panic attacks
  • Hormonal changes
  • Fever
  • Stimulant medications

You may also experience palpitations due to a thyroid problem. Too much or too little thyroid hormone affects your body in various ways, including heart palpitations.

No matter what the cause, it doesn't hurt for our team to evaluate your heart and health. Early evaluation ensures nothing is underlying that's causing the problem.

When to seek help for palpitations

Heart palpitations sometimes go away as quickly as they come on. If you don't experience them again, you likely have a benign form of fluttering in your chest.

However, palpitations can be a sign of a bigger problem. Heart arrhythmias are dangerous and may occasionally cause palpitations in your chest. Tachycardia is a type of arrhythmia that causes a fast heartbeat.

If you're unsure of your palpitations, it's best to seek help from our team. At our practice, we also evaluate you if you have palpitations accompanied by any of the following symptoms:

  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fainting

All these symptoms are signs of heart trouble. An extremely fast heartbeat can cause your blood pressure to fall too low, which leads to fainting or passing out.

If you go into cardiac arrest, your heart stops suddenly and is often fatal. In rare cases, an arrhythmia leads to a deadly cardiac arrest problem. Prompt treatment of heart palpitations helps you avoid serious complications.

If you're concerned about your heart health, call Heart Clinic of Hammond today at 985-974-9278. You may also send a message on our website to request an appointment with Dr. Mikdadi or Dr. Zayed at one of our offices in Hammond or Amite, Louisiana.