Sleep Arrhythmia disorder shows that you have a problem with the rate or rhythm of your heartbeat. In patients with sleep apnea, this rhythm deteriorates when respiration is disturbed in sleep by apnea episodes. An apnea episode appears when you stop breathing in your sleep for 10 seconds or more. If you have more frequent apnea episodes in one night, you will start to have problems with oxygen levels in your blood.

Frequently Asked Questions

There are no visible symptoms, which prevents diagnosis and treatment. Some of these symptoms could be prevalent – racing, or pounding heart, chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, light headedness, anxiety, fainting, reducing capacity for exercise, that impair quality of life. Symptoms could be dangerous and life threatening, and may lead to cardiac death.

It’s a sensation or feeling of a racing or pounding heart, felt in the chest, neck and throat.May be accompanied by an abnormal heart rhythm, they are usually harmless, where there is also no underlying causes are found.They are mainly caused by anxiety, drug use, low blood sugar, electrolyte imbalance, fever, caffeine, alcohol, tobacco and some drugs, could lead to palpitations and panic attacks.When feeling dizzy or fainting, palpitations could indicate a more serious condition.Non-Arrhythmia causes of palpitations can include coronary heart disease and congestive heart failure.An electrocardiogram could help determine the cause of palpitations.

Sleep-related breathing disorders are highly prevalent in patients with established cardiovascular disease. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) affects an estimated 15 million adults in America, and is present in a large portion of patients with hypertension and other cardiovascular diseases such as atrial fibrillation. Sleep apnea is a major cause of atrial fibrillation.

Coronary artery disease - it's the narrowing of the arteries in coronary artery disease, which could lead to arrhythmias. 

Congestive heart failure- The deterioration of the hearts ability to pump blood, and is a high risk for sudden cardiac death from arrhythmia. 

History of heart attack- Heart rhythm abnormally s present in individuals who have had a heart attack.

Infectious myocarditis- infections that damage the heart are associated with some types of arrhythmias.

Cardiomyopathy- damaged or dysfunctional heart muscle, which can cause arrhythmias. 

Congenital heart defects- being born with heart malformations, and could lead to disturbances in heart rhythms. 

Sleep states have a significant effect on your heart, besides a good oxygenation of your body. The consequence of the changing brain activity during normal cycling between NREM (Non-Rapid Eye Movement) and REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep. Patients with sleep apnea have abnormalities in REM sleep, among many other symptoms. During REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep, there are sizeable disturbances in sympathetic nerve activity, which cause significant pauses in heart rhythm. This situation is not a problem for healthy patients, but patients with heart disease and sleep apnea may be at particular risk during REM sleep, as the stress on the system may trigger cardiac dysrhythmia and myocardial infarction.

Use CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) therapy, or another alternative therapy, to avoid apnea episodes during sleep. Reduce your weight and abstain from alcohol and sedatives that can predispose to pharyngeal collapse (thus more chances to have a blockage of the airway) during sleep. Book your appointment for your Sleep study with Sleep Renewal.

Acupuncture: This is the stimulation of a variety of points on the body using needles inserted manually. Patients have a normal heart rhythm post acupuncture treatment.

Mediterranean diet: Helps with improvement of cardio protective effects. When the diet is not followed, arterial fibrillation developed. When diet is adhered to the heart returned to its normal rate and rhythm.

Lifestyle Changes: Adequate exercise, maintaining healthy body weight, stop smoking, cut back on caffeine and alcohol, reduces stress levels, and avoids stimulant medications.

CPAP: Continuous positive airway pressure devices. 

Omega-3/Fish Oil: Lipids found in certain fish and other seafood as well as specific plant sources. Moderate consumption of fish oils/omega-3 fatty acids are heart healthy and provide protection against arrhythmias. Omega-3 fatty acids help to stabilise the electrical activity in the heart, by the reduction of sodium and calcium levels inside the heart muscle cells.

Magnesium and Potassium: Helps to stabilise the heart stability and maintain normal blood functional levels of these ions that are important. A low concentration of these increases the risk for developing ventricular arrhythmias

Magnesium: A deficiency in magnesium could be the. Cause for congestive heart failure, hypertension and angina.

Potassium: It’s important for the maintenance of cardiac electrical stability and changes.

Hawthorn: It’s a fruit baring shrub that helps to support cardiovascular health. It’s also rich in antioxidants, like flavonoids and anthocyanin’s that play a role in cardiovascular diseases.

Antioxidants, such as:

N-Acetyl-cysteine: Has Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that effectively reduce the incidence of post-operative atrial fibrillation.

Vitamins C & E: Has a protective effect against post-operative atrial fibrillation, because of their antioxidant properties.

Resveratrol: Polyphenal is found in grapes and has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Resveratrol suppresses myocardial infarction induced ventricular arrhythmias, and improves long term survival.

Coenzyme Q10: It’s a powerful antioxidant and important for cellular energy production. It plays a therapeutic role in impaired cardiac function like heart failure. It is beneficial for reducing premature ventricular contractions.

Sharon Izak Elaine Chat staff