The normal pulse rate for a healthy person ranges from 60 to 100 beats per minute (BPM). Well-conditioned athletes can have a pulse rate below 60 BPM also. Though a low pulse rate is a sign of a fit, healthy individual, it can lead to various health problems in certain cases. The problem of low pulse rate is medically known as Bradycardia. It is characterized by a slow heartbeat that is unable to provide enough blood to the body’s extremities, thus resulting in a slow pulse rate. This occurs when the pulse rate goes below 50 BPM. Bradycardia can be caused by aging; heart diseases such as endocarditis, myocarditis or coronary diseases; low thyroid levels; and electrolyte imbalances. Read through the following lines to know more about the causes of low pulse rate.
Reasons For Bradycardia
Low pulse rate is one of the many symptoms of low thyroid function called hypothyroidism. When the thyroid glands are unable to produce enough hormones for normal bodily functions, the body slows down, thus resulting in low pulse rate. In serious conditions, hypothyroidism can lead to diabetes, high blood pressure, depression and weight problems.
A condition where your body temperature is lower than 95 degrees Fahrenheit is known as hypothermia. This condition leads to impairment of the normal processes of the body and affects bodily functions, including vision, breathing, blood pressure, speech and muscles. Eventually, the heartbeat reduces, which in turn results in a low pulse rate.
Your heart requires electrical impulses to keep it working in a rhythm. Any disruption in the same forces the heart to work harder to pump your blood, which leads to low heart rate and thus, low pulse rate. A drop in the blood pressure can lead to cardiac arrest. Immediate medical assistance should be taken in case you experience loss of energy, weakness and fainting, along with a low pulse rate.
Lack of proper knowledge leads to malnutrition, causing problems related to healing and your ability to fight infections. In severe cases, it can affect breathing, cause kidney problems and result in heart conditions. In even more serious conditions, it results in a low heartbeat and weak pulse.
In case the sinus node is not functioning properly or malfunctioning, it can initiate the electrical signals to slow down or pause periodically. This slows down the heartbeat, thus resulting in a low pulse rate.
Other conditions that can result in low pulse rate include low blood pressure, birth defects, an electrolyte imbalance, under-active thyroid, heart tissue damage, dizziness, shortness of breath, and having chest pain and/ or fainting spells due to drop in blood pressure.