February 24, 2008,
J.A. asks from Elk Grove Village, IL on February 22, 2008
Last Night While My Son Was Sleeping I Noticed His Heart Beating Fast Then Slow
My son is 5 years old and is healthy and active, no problems.
Last night I heard a noise in his room so I went in thinking he was up, I think we just turned over and bumped the wall.
Looked like he was having a dream so I sat on his bed and put my hand on his chest. Of course his heart was beating fast but then it would slow down and then fast again. A few times it would seem to go very slow and almost change rhythm.
I am beside myself with concern.
Anyone experience this?
So What Happened?™
Thanks for the responses. I planned on calling the Dr. but figured I could wait till they opened.
I did call and they and made the nurse talk to the doctor. He did not seen too concerned. He said monitor him during the day, which we have done.
I needed to take him for his school exam so I made an appointment this Monday.
He had some other health issues when he was a baby so I always think the worse and have to make sure I am not missing anything.
Thanks again for the support. We will see what the doctor says on Monday.
I pray that this is nothing,
M.M. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2008
Hi, J.. Mention it to your pediatrician of course, but don't panic - especially if his coloring is okay (rosy cheeks, etc...).
My son was born with something called sinus arrhythmia and it used to REALLY freak us out when he had a fever as an infant (he was my one kid who got ear infections every time he cut a new tooth and the fevers would - no lie - get as high as 105 or more). Fast asleep, high fever, I'd listen to his chest and the "off beat" business was even MORE dramatic than ever; to the point where it would go, "tick-tick-tick-k'chooooong..... *silence* ....tick tick..." that sorta thing.
I went as far as having him checked by a pediatric cardiologist for a few years (I have a mitral valve prolapse, same with my mother - this just made me feel safer to have these checkups for him). The long and short of it is it's pretty harmless. Something I was always told he'd grow out of when he hit puberty.
Sure enough, he's almost 13 now, I hug him after he's been running outside, I listen..... can't find that "off beat" business anymore. Don't worry too much, hon, just definitely mention it next time you see the doc. Take care.
D. answers from Chicago on February 22, 2008
I'd check with your doctor about it but it could just be an irregular heart beat. I've got the same problem and my heart speeds up when I inhale and slows down when I exhale. It hasn't caused me any problems so far, but I'd just ask your doctor just to make sure.
C.K. answers from Chicago on February 22, 2008
He was probably having a very exciting dream. This is what happens during REM sleep. If you were only feeling his heart beat through his chest, it's not an accurate heart rate reading. You have to go apply pressure to an aortic pressure point either in his neck or wrist. If you're really that concerned get a stopwatch and take his pulse and if it's too high or low then call the dr, you can do this when he's awake. However I really wouldn't be concerned becuase this is very normal when you're dreaming.
J.L. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2008
If he was dreaming, then the change of heartbeat rhythm is very much to be expected. Especially if it was an exciting dream. Keep an eye on him to make sure that it was a dream or just ask him and see if he remembers it. It was probably just a dream though.
K.V. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2008
Call and ask your doctor! Don't wait for and depend on a blog!
G.H. answers from Chicago on February 24, 2008
The best thing is to stay calm. He may be having a bad dream or it may be something else. When I was his age I was diagnosed with a heart murmer. Call the dr. and tell him. He'll probably want to see the child to make sure. I've lived many years with it so I wouldn't worry too much.just take him to doc. During the nightmare or whatever you can gently stroke him while softly telling him "mommy loves you; mommy is here; you'll be o.k.". The comforting can bring him out of it without startling him. Good luck mommy
L.Z. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2008
Hi J. - I'm a nurse and this is a very common condition. It's called sinus arrhythmia and is related to his breathing pattern. It is NOT a condition of concern - it is normal for many people. To put your mind at ease, place a call to your pediatrician's office and tell them of your observations...see if they think you need to bring him in. In the meantime, do not worry too much - it is normal for many people.