Can't Sleep Due to Fast Heartbeat? Here's What You Can Do

Medically reviewed by Mia Dacumos, MD · Nephrology · Makati Medical Center

Written by Amable Aguiluz · Updated Aug 15, 2022

    Can't Sleep Due to Fast Heartbeat? Here's What You Can Do

    Can’t sleep due to a fast heartbeat? Experiencing lack of sleep due to the irregularity of one’s heartbeat is not something to take lightly. Palpitations and rhythm irregularities can be a sign of something wrong.

    Factors such as poor diet, lack of exercise, prolonged vices such as smoking, and sleep deprivation are responsible for the detriment of heart health of many adults worldwide.

    But how does sleep deprivation affect your heart health? Is it true that some people can’t sleep due to fast heartbeat?

    Lack of sleep

    Lack of sleep has a marked effect on the health of not only your heart, but your whole body. Sleep is an essential time that needs to be taken by the body to recuperate from the day.

    If you can’t sleep due to fast heartbeat, this is a sign that you are possibly at risk of more serious heart conditions. However, during sleep, heart rate tends to drop when you are experiencing non-rapid eye movement or NREM sleep stages.

    A lack of sleep marked by sleep interruptions caused by nightmares or other factors are known to cause a sharp rise in one’s heart rate. If the lack of sleep occurs due to a person’s insomnia, the body does not have the chance to get enough rest and experience the NREM sleep stages that allow the heart rate to go down. Any of these situations can give you issues with rest and will make you feel like you can’t sleep due to fast heartbeat.

    Causes of fast heart beat resulting to sleep deprivation

    Interruptions to your sleep and insomnia may affect your heart health, but if you cannot sleep due to your heart racing, this could be caused by other factors.

    Nighttime heart palpitations may be alarming for some individuals especially if they feel fine throughout the whole day. These are some reasons your heart may be racing by the time you wish to fall asleep:

    • Hormones: Hormone swings are known to speed up your heart rate for women especially during pregnancy, or in any stage of their menstrual cycles.
    • Medicines: Certain prescription or over the counter drugs are known to have side effects that increase one’s heart rate.
    • Stress: An excess of stress in one’s life can have serious implications on your heart health as it can lead to anxiety or stress disorders, which have a noticeable effect on one’s heart rate and heart health in general.
    • Diet: Foods that are high in sugar and monosodium glutamate are known to cause an increase in heart rate and blood pressure. The same applies to alcohol and caffeine, so it is best to look after what you eat if you are experiencing nighttime palpitations.

    Remedies for sleep deprivation caused by a fast heartbeat

    Can’t sleep due to fast heartbeat? The best remedy for nighttime palpitations is to directly address the causes.

    When diet or medicine intake is the culprit, it may be advisable to make adjustments to the food and medications you take.

    If you are experiencing an unnecessary amount of stress, and have experienced anxiety to your detriment for a prolonged period of time, it would be best to seek professional help and enlist the aid of a therapist.

    If you are experiencing hormonal changes, it would be best to let it run its course as these changes do not last for a prolonged period of time. Sleep deprivation caused by an increase in your heartbeat tend to become serious only when you experience this for a prolonged amount of time.

    Key takeaway

    If you can’t sleep due to fast heartbeat, it may be due to hormones, medications, stress, or diet. It is important to actively resolve any health issues that have an impact on the way you sleep, as sleep is the key to keeping your body ready for the next day and to keep yourself balanced. A lack of sleep can damage a person’s quality of life.

    Learn more about Heart Arrhythmias here.


    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Medically reviewed by

    Mia Dacumos, MD

    Nephrology · Makati Medical Center

    Written by Amable Aguiluz · Updated Aug 15, 2022


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