Whether the individual wakes up from a deep sleep or finds it difficult to fall asleep, the cause might be a pounding heart rate that can be disturbing and frightening to some. In some cases, a pounding heart rate at night time is moderately harmless and only occurs occasionally. On the other hand, a pounding heart rate that occurs at night can indicate a serious underlying health issue. If you want to learn more about this condition, click here.
Low blood pressure
Even though the heart is responsible for controlling the blood pressure, it is important to note that blood pressure can control the heart. The blood pressure is the force of blood against the arterial walls. For healthy individuals, the blood pressure is at its lowest at night when the body is at rest. The blood pressure will slowly rise upon waking up and peaks during the afternoon. Although the blood pressure regularly drops at night time, some can experience issues.
In rare cases, the blood pressure drops too low that the body could no longer receive enough blood. As a way to comply with the needs of the body, the heart beats faster to supply enough blood. In severe cases, the heart can beat rapidly that it seems to pound inside the chest.
Low blood sugar
A pounding heart rate can be accompanied by dizziness, shakiness and confusion. These are the indications of low blood sugar in the body or hypoglycemia. This is considered as a dangerous condition especially among those who are diabetic.
Always bear in mind that the body largely depends on sugar for energy as well as perform vital bodily functions. Once the sugar level drops drastically, the body could not function properly that result to a pounding heart rate in an attempt to deal with the problem. The low blood sugar can occur after skipping meals, excess insulin and vigorous exercise.
Nightmares and night terrors
Some individuals have experienced nightmares at some point that causes them to wake up abruptly with a pounding heart rate and sweating. Even though night terrors involve frightening and vivid dreams, they stay asleep throughout the entire episode and rarely recall the dream upon waking up.
Oftentimes, nightmares and night terrors are relatively harmless. Even though they may temporarily cause pounding heart rate and increased respiration, they can quickly return to normal upon waking up. Nevertheless, if the nightmares or night terrors frequently disrupt sleep or causes injury, a doctor should be consulted.
Palpitations and a pounding heart rate are the usual side effects of various medications. The medications that are used in treating asthma and high blood pressure often cause the heart to beat quickly.
Once caffeine and nicotine enter the body, they stimulate the central nervous system. During the day, the individual will not notice the excess stimulation since the body is in motion while the mind is focused elsewhere. Nevertheless, this stimulation can be quite obvious at night when the body is at rest. If the individual regularly takes medications, drink caffeine or smokes cigarettes, they should be done at least 3-4 hours before bedtime.