Heart Rate During Pregnancy: What You Need to Know

Heart Rate During Pregnancy


Pregnancy is a beautiful journey filled with excitement, anticipation, and numerous physical changes. It is a special time for moms-to-be, bringing many changes to their bodies. One important change is the heart rate during pregnancy. During this journey, it’s common for a pregnant woman’s heart rate to be different from what it was before. But don’t worry, it’s all part of the process! Understanding how pregnancy affects heart rate is important for expecting moms.

In this article, we’ll explore what’s normal for heart rate during pregnancy, what factors can influence it, and when it’s important to talk to a doctor. Join us as we learn more about this exciting time and how to stay healthy and happy throughout pregnancy!

Understanding the Changes in Heart Rate During Pregnancy:

When a woman is pregnant, her heart beats faster than normal. This happens because her body needs more blood to help the baby grow. So, her heart has to work extra hard to pump all that blood around her body. It’s like her heart is doing more work to take care of her and her baby during pregnancy. In the beginning, her heart rate might not change much, but by the end of pregnancy, it could be 10 to 20 beats per minute faster than normal.

Firstly, it’s important to know that during pregnancy, a woman’s heart beats faster. This is because her body needs to send more blood and oxygen to the baby. The extra blood volume helps the baby grow and prepares the body for giving birth.

Secondly, it’s essential to understand that while it’s normal to have a high heart rate during pregnancy, sometimes it can go too fast because of conditions like pre-eclampsia or diabetes. If a pregnant woman feels her heart is beating too fast or she has other unusual symptoms like shortness of breath or chest pain, she should see a doctor right away.

Additionally, pregnant women should be careful when they exercise. Exercise is good during pregnancy, but it’s best to do activities that don’t make the heart beat too fast. It’s recommended to keep the heart rate below 140 beats per minute during exercise to keep both the mother and the baby safe.

Lastly, pregnant women need to stay healthy. Eating well, doing safe exercises, and finding ways to relax are all important for keeping the heart rate normal during pregnancy. Getting enough rest and avoiding stressful situations is also important for a healthy pregnancy.

Normal Heart Rate During Pregnancy:

During pregnancy, a woman’s heart beats a bit faster than usual, typically ranging from 60 to 100 beats per minute while resting. This high heart rate during pregnancy occurs because her body is working harder to support the growing baby and manage the additional blood volume. However, individual differences exist, so some women may experience heart rates outside this range, which can still be considered normal unless accompanied by other concerning symptoms.

Factors such as maternal age, fitness level, and pre-existing medical conditions can influence heart rate during pregnancy. Therefore, expectant mothers need to consult with their healthcare provider and monitor their heart rate regularly to ensure the well-being of both themselves and their babies.

Hormonal Changes and the Heart Rate During Pregnancy

During pregnancy, hormonal changes play a significant role in affecting heart rate. Firstly, the hormone progesterone increases substantially, causing the muscles around blood vessels to relax. This relaxation lowers blood pressure but leads to a faster heart rate. Additionally, another hormone called “relaxin” also rises during pregnancy, further relaxing muscles and ligaments, including those around blood vessels. Consequently, due to these hormonal shifts and the increased blood volume, the heart needs to work harder. It results in a high heartbeat during pregnancy.

Impact of Emotional and Physical Stress:

During pregnancy, both emotional and physical stress can impact a woman’s heart rate. When feeling worried or stressed, our body releases hormones that speed up our heart rate. Similarly, engaging in activities such as lifting heavy objects or excessive exercise can also be a cause of a high pulse rate in pregnancy as the body works harder.

To maintain health during pregnancy, expectant mothers must relax and avoid excessive strain on their bodies. They can achieve this by taking deep breaths, staying calm, and engaging in gentle exercises. Effectively managing stress helps stabilize the heart rate, benefiting both the mother and the developing baby.

Effects of Exercise on Heart Rate During Pregnancy:

Exercising during pregnancy can affect how fast your heart beats. When you’re active, like when walking or swimming, your heart rate goes up. However, it’s important to keep it at a safe level. Doing exercises that aren’t too hard can make your heart stronger and help you feel better during pregnancy. But it’s essential not to do exercises that are too tough. Always talk to your doctor before starting any new exercise routine.

Additionally, exercising can make your heart healthier and help you stay strong during pregnancy. It may even make your heart beat slower when you’re resting, which is a good sign of a healthy heart.


Abnormal heart rate during pregnancy can lead to various complications for both the mother and the baby. If the heart beats too fast or too slow, it might indicate underlying health issues that need attention. When the heart beats too fast, it could mean the baby isn’t getting enough oxygen, which might cause problems with their growth. Conversely, if the heart beats too slow, it might make the mother feel tired or dizzy.

Sometimes, it can even lead to the baby being born too early or having trouble during birth. Consequently, doctors must check the heart rate regularly during pregnancy to ensure everything is okay.

How to Monitor Heart Rate During Pregnancy?

It’s really important to keep an eye on the heart rate during pregnancy. Changes in heart rate can tell us if there might be any problems, like gestational diabetes or issues with the placenta. Doctors use this information to make sure both mom and baby stay healthy. Additionally, they also give advice tailored to each mom, like how to stay healthy and manage stress.

To do this, it’s helpful to use a special device called a heart rate monitor. This device makes it easy to keep track of heart rate and make sure everything is going smoothly during pregnancy. Consistently tracking your heart rate at different times of the day is important. By monitoring your heart rate regularly, you can stay informed about any changes. It will help you take necessary action if needed to ensure the well-being of both you and your baby.

When to Seek Medical Help for Abnormal Heart Rate During Pregnancy?

If you experience persistent dizziness, fainting spells, chest discomfort, or unusually rapid or slow heartbeats during pregnancy, it is crucial to seek medical attention promptly. These symptoms may indicate underlying issues with your heart rate that require evaluation and management by healthcare professionals specializing in maternal-fetal medicine. Prompt medical intervention can help ensure the well-being of both you and your developing baby.

Moreover, if you observe sudden changes in your heart rate pattern accompanied by symptoms such as shortness of breath, palpitations, or excessive fatigue, it is advisable to consult your obstetrician without delay. Assessing these alterations promptly can aid in identifying any potential complications and implementing appropriate measures to safeguard your health and the healthy progression of your pregnancy. Remember, timely medical intervention is key in addressing any concerns related to abnormal heart rate during pregnancy.

Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Heart Rate During Pregnancy

It’s important to see a doctor if your heart beats too fast or changes suddenly during pregnancy. Also, if you feel chest pain, or dizziness, or have trouble doing normal activities, it’s time to seek help. Quick action and medical care can prevent problems and make sure your pregnancy goes smoothly. During pregnancy, do activities like walking or swimming to keep your heart healthy. Additionally, eating well, drinking enough water, resting, and managing stress also help keep your heart rate stable throughout pregnancy.

Importance of Regular Check-ups for Monitoring Heart Rate During Pregnancy

Regular visits to the doctor during pregnancy are really important. These visits help the doctor check how the mom and the baby are doing, including their heart rates. The doctor listens to the mom’s heart to make sure it’s working well. If there’s a problem, the doctor can find it early and help fix it. These visits also make sure the mom and baby are healthy throughout the pregnancy. So, going to the doctor regularly is very important for keeping the mom and baby safe.


To conclude, during pregnancy, it’s normal for the heart rate to change as the body supports the growing baby. While a high heart rate when pregnant is okay, pregnant moms need to notice any big changes and talk to a doctor if they’re concerned. By understanding what affects heart rate during pregnancy and doing healthy things, moms-to-be can take care of themselves and their baby. Additionally, don’t forget to talk to your doctor for help and advice during pregnancy.

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