“Stress And Atrial Fibrillation: Stress May Be A Trigger In AFib” is something that is explored here. I came across a study that suggests that stress may be a significant trigger in atrial fibrillation (also called AFib and AF). I also suggest some ways to help you manage stress.
This study was done with 100 people who experienced atrial fibrillation and who required hospital assistance. These 100 people were selected at random and asked to complete a questionnaire. This was a structured questionnaire with over 50 questions that covered arrhythmia-triggering factors along with the time that the event started and the symptoms during the event. This study suggests very much that stress may be a significant trigger in atrial fibrillation as determined by these 100 people.
Stress May Be A Trigger In Atrial Fibrillation
One of the findings of this was that stress was the most common factor triggering arrhythmia at 54%. Just over half. That is a significant percentage.
I looked at the chart provided in this study. I noted that the triggers added up to more than 100%. I noted that 15% identified no triggers, so that left 85% that identified triggers, so that means that this 85% identified one trigger or two triggers or more triggers each. I also noted that these were what these 100 people thought after the event were the triggers, so it may not be fully objective however the identified triggers and their associated values are interesting and worth noting.
Physical effort came in at 42%. Tiredness came in at 41%. Any alcohol came in as 34%. Coffee came in at 25%. Infections came in at 22%. Food came in at 18%. Individual foods came in at values between 1% and 5%. These foods were Onions, Nuts, Chocolate, Ice cream, Spiced food, Cream, Strawberries, Fish, Sweets, Beans, Shellfish and Garlic.
The sample of 100 people is too small to come up with any general observations that could be applied to the greater population who experience atrial fibrillation. Nevertheless these observations are interesting. These reported triggers may help you to identify your own triggers if you experience atrial fibrillation.
However I do feel that emotional stress or mental stress may be a trigger in a lot of cases. In any case, if stress is not an actual trigger, having atrial fibrillation may add to your stress so exploring ways to reduce your stress is a good idea.
There is growing evidence that chronic stress can physically alter the emotion centers of the limbic system …
… growing evidence supports lifestyle modification approaches as adjuncts to improve AF control.
The above quotes were taken from the abstract of an article about atrial fibrillation. As you can see from the above quote, the language used is very formal. I find it hard to follow as it is not in what I call everyday English.
My understanding of it is:
Emotional long standing stress can affect physically how the part of the human brain that manages emotions is structured …
… Evidence suggests that good lifestyle approaches can act in partnership with medical science to improve AFib experiences.
I think that anything that helps the nervous system would be a help here. My personal understanding of this is that learning how to relax and practice meditation on a regular basis ideally daily would be a good idea to help the nervous system. If the nervous system is so involved it makes sense to me to reduce as much as possible stress in normal everyday life. And if the nervous system is so involved it also makes sense to me to learn how to relax and practice meditation.
Please note that the above quote suggests lifestyle changes in conjunction with other medical approaches.
Atrial Fibrillation and Stress
If you have atrial fibrillation this can lead to stress. Then this stress may not help your atrial fibrillation. So exploring ways to reduce stress very much on purpose may help on both fronts: With the stress and with the atrial fibrillation.
As stress may be a significant trigger according to this study in atrial fibrillation, as many practical ways to manage stress should be explored as possible.
Some Ways To Manage Stress
Learning about and practicing stress management techniques should be a high priority.
Some stress management techniques include:
- Meditate Regularly
- Remind Your Body To Relax
- Interrupt A Thought Process
More detail about each of the above Stress Management Techniques along with more Stress Management Techniques can be found here.
Now that you understand that stress may be a trigger in atrial fibrillation, you understand the importance of reducing your stress while at the same time you are managing your atrial fibrillation. It is important that you manage your atrial fibrillation in conjunction with your doctor and your cardiologist.
Some ideas to manage stress include the importance of getting enough quality sleep every night along with doing as many agreeable stress management techniques as you find appropriate. One very useful stress management technique is meditation. Consider doing meditation every day if this is not part of your daily routine. You could start doing three to four minutes of meditation daily and then build that up over time.
And if you want the ability to capture EKGs anywhere anytime to determine if atrial fibrillation is detected in that EKG, the good news is that a small device called Kardia Mobile what works with your compatible smartphone can capture EKGs and provide an instant result.
Kardia Mobile is FDA cleared to detect atrial fibrillation.
Kardia Mobile is FDA cleared to detect that the heart rhythm is normal.
I wrote my detailed Kardia Mobile Review based on my experience of using it since October 2016. You can read my review by clicking on the button below: