Low heart rate:


Low heart rate means that the heart is beating too slowly usually less than 60 beats per minute. It is important to realize that for some people with healthy hearts, a rate below 60 beats per minute may be normal. After all, our heart rates may dip below normal range when we sleep, and some athletes experience heart rates below 60 beats per minute when they rest. The two most common causes of bradycardia are diseases of the senatorial node sick sinus syndrome, which is the heart's natural pacemaker or other problems with the heart's electrical conduction system heart block. These diseases can cause the heart to beat too slowly all the time or occasionally. In either case, the heart may not pump enough blood to meet the body's needs. As the heart rate declines, there is not sufficient blood flow to the brain, causing feelings of light-headedness, and sometimes, fainting. Every normal heart has a normal rhythm. That rhythm varies from person to person. In most healthy people, the heart at rest beats about 60 to 100 times per minute. A small bunch of heart cells called the sinoatrial node keeps time. Many athletes especially runners have low resting heart rates. As long as the EKG shows a normal sinus bradycardia, and as long as the heart rate rises appropriately with exercise, there is usually no problem. A low heart rate can sometimes cause dizziness or lightheadedness, in addition to fatigue, but this does not appear to be the case with you. An under active thyroid can cause a low heart rate. Sometimes electrolyte imbalances can cause a low heart rate and this is of particular concern if someone is on a very restrictive type of diet.

Symptoms of low heart rate:

Each heart has it own normal rhythm brought about by the seamless flow of electrical impulses that begins in the heart's natural "pacemaker" sinus node. The electricity flows through the upper chambers (atria), crosses the bridge between upper and lower chambers atrioventricular node and travels to the lower chambers ventricles. This passage of electricity culminates in a carefully coordinated contraction of heart muscle that pushes blood throughout the human body.
Each day, a normal heart contracts about 100,000 times, at a rate anywhere from 60 to 100 times a minute. Abnormally slow heart rates are typically those below 60 beats a minute and either can be relatively harmless or life threatening. Changes in rate brought about by variations in activity, diet, medication and age are normal and common. For some people, such as athletes in top condition, a resting heart rate of below 60 can be normal. Similarly, at certain times, such as sleep, a heart rate may slow and still be normal. Symptoms of low heart rate are:
Fatigue, weakness
Dizziness
Lightheadedness
Fainting
Shortness of breath.

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