You often can reduce or prevent changes in your heart rate or rhythm.
- Prevent fatigue by getting plenty of sleep and rest. If you become overtired, your changes in heart rate or rhythm may be more severe or occur more often.
- Cut back or eliminate caffeine, including coffee, tea, colas, and chocolate. Some nonprescription medicines, such as Excedrin, contain caffeine. Caffeine may increase your heart rate.
- Cut back or eliminate alcohol and tobacco, which also contain substances that increase heart rate and can cause irregular rhythms.
- Stop using medicines that increase heart rate, such as cough and cold remedies, nose drops, or allergy relief medicines that contain pseudoephedrine, epinephrine, or ephedrine.
- If stress affects your heart rhythm or rate, try relaxation exercises and deep breathing techniques. A healthy exercise program can help reduce stress. For more information, see the topic Stress Management.
Knowing CPR could be useful for anyone. Many parents learn CPR so they know what to do if their children need it. People who have family members with a heart problem also should learn CPR.