Anyone got tips on how to calm down heart palpitations quickly (POTS) ?


Senior Member
Past few nights I've had about 40mins of heart palpitations as I lie down to sleep.

This is a recent occurrence - it happened a few years ago too - I think its because I've been physically inactive due to a bad cold I've had.

Anyway, I breath deeply , or try to, and eventually I get there. But its annoying.
During the night if I have to get up I am careful to get up very, very slowly.
But maybe as I am preparing for bed I do disturb my POTS to the level where it complains for 40 mins.

Any advice on calming down these heart palpitations more quicker ?


J'aime nager dans le froid style Wim Hof.. 🏊‍♀️🙃
Geneva, Switzerland
What helps me is 5-2-5 breathing. it's as simple as it gets and doesn't need any experience with yoga or anything else.
  • basic technique: just breathe in white counting five, hold breath while counting two, then breathe out while counting five. Then continue by repeating this cycle. (So, when you have breathed out, you make no pause and when you have breathed in you make a pause counting two.)
  • number of repetitions: Normally, a couple of 5-2-5 rounds are enough in me. But when they are not, do it for some minutes and then stop for some minutes. Then do it again for some minutes, and so on...
  • relationship to disease in me: Years ago, when I had ME, I had palpitations when lying down as you do, Currently I have resolved ME but still have POTS and I get somewhat irregular and very strong but not rapid heartbeats when I wake up. Let's call them pulsations. Whatever the exact form (palpitation or pulsation), whatever the timing (lying down or waking up) and whatever the cause, I found this breathing technique helpful. Back when I had ME, I needed many rounds with minutes of pauses in between, in the worst case it was altogether some 15 minutes of time elapsed from the very start to the very end, with pauses in between, but it did work. And it was definitely much less than 40 minutes. currently, I do only a few of 5-2-5 and then it's done.
  • trick for more effect: Additionally you also may experiment with doing the counting to the rhythm of your heart. That is, five heart beats in, two heartbeats pause, five heartbeats breathing out. This is an idea they popularize with the HRV (heart rate variability) gadget, EMWave 2. However, aart from when doing the 5-2-5 with counting to the heart rhythm, I found it beneficial to not think much about the heart and it's beating. This I emphasize, because the heart is a strange thing: observing it makes it beat more in undesired ways. Observation influences function.

Surprisingly, while this breathing technique may sound like something alternative or even yogic, this and simillar breathing techniques are researched and recommended by some medical doctors. If you are interested in diving deeper, just head to and add in "breathing panic attack" or "breathing technique panic attack". Now, I am not suggesting you or anyone else lying down and having palpitations have a panic attack, not at all. And I do not find the name panic attack any fortunate, as it suggests something psychological. But this is how you find variants of this breathing technique and how you find research about its efficacy and other techniques that can be used. This and similar techniques simply address the autonomic aspects that can happen from a psychological panic attack and that can happen from many other triggers or mixed triggers. In me, for example, the typical trigger is immunological issues in the gut combined with having POTS. Currently, I am treating my sick gut using medicinal-nutritional mushrooms (lions mane, shiitake). They are research-proven to enhance gut-associated immunity, for example increase secretory IGA and defensins. And during these days of treatment, I get these strange heartbeats. In me, it is even a sign that what I do to treat myself works and will lead to a good result. In fact I have already earned improvement in my tolerance for food, which is exactly what sIGA is supposed to do, of which I had too little so far. Earlier, my happy success to get rid of PEM (post exceptional malaise) was by transdermal vitamin B3 (smearing B3 powder with a little water on my skin, refresh water regularly) in huge quantities. And this induced also issues with undesirable forms of heart beating. When they came no more, I knew that I was ready to increase dosage.

I like your attitude of regarding those palpitations you experience simply as an annoyance as you say and a loss of time as you imply. something that could be managed in order to be more efficient and get sleep sooner.

Good luck and happy experimenting! :)

I am looking forward to learn about other people's experiences how to handle these heartbeat issues or what exactly the physiology behind!!
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