Fast Heart Rate

What does the fast heart rate notification mean?

A fast heart rate can be caused by a variety of situations and is occasionally harmless, especially when it is related to the baby´s agitated or nervous state.

During the baby´s first year, it is quite normal to receive fast heart rate notifications when the baby is nursing. The baby´s organism is in constant development, and the autonomous nervous system is continually changing to regulate the functions like the heart rate speed. When the baby is nursing, the sympathetic nervous system is stimulated, and the heart rate rises.

There are times when the baby´s respiratory tract may be obstructed by mucous. This will make nursing more difficult as the baby cannot breathe as easily through the nose and mouth, and the heart rate may increment due to this stressful situation.

If this produces an alert, it is important to monitor the baby´s state. If everything is normal and the baby nurses correctly, you do not have to do anything. If the baby is irritable, you must first calm him/her down and then continue with the nursing. If the increased heart rate persists, then it would be a good idea to make sure that all other conditions are normal.

It is also possible that the baby may be experiencing digestive difficulties, for example, constipation, which can also cause discomfort and stress.

What should you do at home?

When should an emergency service be consulted?

If the high pulse notification persists after all the action protocols mentioned above have been carried out, or if it repeats during several days, we recommend you to attend to an emergency pediatrics service.

* This information is an excerpt from the Information Sheets for parents of the Spanish Pediatric Emergency Society and the Pediatric Emergency Protocols, you can find the information in full: