Autism Spectrum Sensory Issues Sensory Related

#SensoryIssues: Be Still, My Beating Heart

Or at least, either calm down or render it so I can’t feel you again….

Gah. For the last several days (almost a week) I’ve been able to feel my heart beating pretty much anytime I’m not focused on something specific/concentrating. Especially when I’m trying to get to sleep at night.

It’s not that (as far as I know) my heartbeat is currently abnormal. I think it’s a sensory issue having to do with interoception. (Check out Musings of an Aspie’s post defining interoception and detailing some of the things it involves.) But the basic definition is that interoception is the perception of things that are internal to your body – temperature, organ and muscle feelings, hunger, thirst, need to use the toilet, etc.

Normally/usually, I’m distantly aware of my heart beating; if I think about it, I can sometimes feel it. Or when it occasionally jumps/skips a beat or so. But over this period, I’ve been feeling it thumping. Or pounding, perhaps, as an alternative term, though I think “thumping” is a more accurate descriptor.

It’s rather troubling, interfering with my ability to sleep and raising my anxiety levels (because under “normal circumstances”, I wouldn’t be able to feel it like this, meaning my mind jumps to the conclusion that there’s a problem). It also seems to be reducing my ability to concentrate on other stuff.

Not sure how much anyone can help me cope with this, considering the whole “internal feels” element of the situation. But I thought I’d toss this out here, because it’s being an issue.

*shrugs* If anyone does have any suggestions or advice, please, let me know? It’s driving me nuts at the moment, and I’m really not sure how to cope.


😐 tagÂûght

By tagÂûght

I’m in my mid-thirties. I’ve lived in Canada all my life (Toronto and St. John’s), but I’ve travelled to Florida, Massachusetts, England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland, and Costa Rica. I love airplane travel (as long as there are no noisy kids around me!). I’m proud to be Canadian (though Harper might end up changing that!).

I have ASD, aka Autism Spectrum Disorder. Strictly speaking, I’ve been diagnosed as having Aspergers, but (for Canada and the US, at least) that diagnosis is going to be melded with ASD as of May, with the publication of DSM V. Having ASD, and the job I do at the moment (see First Post), is why reading the blogs I mentioned above inspired me to start one of my own about my life in general.

Back in October, I got my driver’s license (as opposed to driving permit for learners) – after twenty years of effort and trying. A lot of thanks is due to my instructor, who has dealt with people with ASD before, and so knew how to teach me for the test (I was able to drive before, just not pass the test, due to anxiety and problems with multi-tasking).

I’m a fanatic writer of SF and Fantasy, both fanfiction and original, and I devour books as well.

I love animals, in particular cats, and I have a fascination with wolves, wild cats (including the big cats), orcas, and the physiology of cephalopods.

I love the wilderness – though I don’t really have the endurance (at the moment, at least) to go hiking or camping out.

And, rather importantly, I’m not someone who thinks about political correctness when it comes to vocabulary. I use what seems right when it seems right. That will include calling myself a person with ASD, or an Autistic, or an Aspie. I’m me; I can call myself what I want.

So, enough about me. Go read my posts – they’re more informative!

2 replies on “#SensoryIssues: Be Still, My Beating Heart”

Sometimes it’s an electrolyte imbalance. Try a little salt? Other times I’ve had similar symptoms from Lyme disease. If you’ve had a tick bite any time in the past few weeks, you might ask someone to do a titer and check if you’re asymptomatic (no bullseye rash).

No, I don’t think it’s anything like that. As far as I know, my heartbeat hasn’t actually changed, it’s just my awareness of it that’s changed. *shrugs*

😐 tagÂûght

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