Q. I have heart palpitations. Is it something to do with my caffeine and nicotine intake?

Answered by
Dr. Muhammad Zohaib Siddiq
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Jun 04, 2021

Hi doctor,

I am 22 years old. I have been having trouble sleeping for almost a year now. Sometimes worse and sometimes better. I am fairly certain it is because of heart palpitations. I am sure it is caused by stress, smoking, or caffeine. So I have been cutting back. And most nights, I can get through it and eventually fall asleep. I have not gone in to do actual tests. Because I have felt like it may be something to do with my caffeine, nicotine intake, and stuff like that, until this point, I was sure I could get better by cutting back, and doing that would help minimize the occurrence of my palpitations. When I first started having palpitations, I would have them during the day, and they were rare and only lasted maybe half a second. I always thought it was just a muscle spasm. I would have them occasionally. But it started happening more frequently, and now it only happens when I am specifically in the transition of falling asleep. As of right now, I have been awake for 48 hours, and I am still skeptical whether it is something I am doing or if it is something more serious. I am worried about going to medical and reporting it because having severe health issues like this almost guarantees a discharge from the navy. But obviously, I know my life is more important. I need to hear a professional opinion from someone before I want to report it. Also, I would like to note that I went to a cardiologist almost a year ago, and he told me my heart was 100% healthy. Please guide me.



Welcome to

Palpitations may occur due to various reasons:

1) Fast heart rate (many causes).

2) Slower heart rate (many causes).

3) Irregular heart rate (many causes).

4) Being overcautious about heartbeats.

5) Thin, lean patients can feel heartbeats, especially in a recumbent position (normal).

Avoid being overcautious about it. Do regular aerobic exercise. This will condition the heart, and palpitations will go away over time. If anytime you feel palpitations, relax, count your pulse rate and assess regularity. If the rate is more than 100 at rest or irregular, have an ECG (echocardiogram) done.

Regarding sleep problems, it may be related to shifting duties, stress, or anxiety. Caffeine causes palpitations and fast heart rates. Cut it, and the fast heart rates will become normal. I hope this was helpful.

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