Take Melatonin Supplements to Sleep, These are the Benefits and Side Effects

Melatonin supplements can help people with sleep disorders. The trick is to speed up the time it takes to fall asleep, trigger drowsiness, and improve sleep quality.

Table of Content

1. Benefits of melatonin supplements for sleep cycle
2. Side effects of taking melatonin supplements
3. How to take the right melatonin supplement
4. People who can and should not take melatonin supplements

Melatonin is a natural hormone in the body that functions to regulate a person’s sleep and wake cycles. When melatonin production is reduced, you will find it difficult to sleep. But this deficiency can be replaced by taking melatonin supplements. But you should first find the main cause why you have trouble sleeping.

Melatonin supplements are not usually used for people who have only occasional sleeplessness. The use of this supplement is intended for people who experience disorders that make it difficult for them to sleep. For example, insomnia, jet lag, chronic pain, to dementia.

Benefits of melatonin supplements for sleep cycle

The human body has a sophisticated system that allows it to set its own ideal sleep and wake time. When it gets dark, the body will naturally produce the hormone melatonin. When melatonin starts to be produced, this is a signal that will make us sleepy.

Unfortunately, light or bright atmosphere will inhibit melatonin production. As a result, this condition will prevent a person from feeling sleepy.

Not only that, sunlight, room lights, to blue light from electronic devices (such as cellphone screens) can affect melatonin production in the body.

People who have trouble sleeping have low levels of melatonin. Therefore, taking melatonin supplements can help them fall asleep.

For more details, let’s look at a series of disorders that can be relieved with melatonin:

1. Insomnia

Taking melatonin supplements in the short term can help speed up the time it takes a person to fall asleep. Even so, the effect is actually not very significant.

Consumption of this supplement is considered more effective in elderly insomnia sufferers or has a history of certain diseases.

You can take this supplement if the sleep disturbance does not go away after two days. However, until now there has been no research that states that melatonin supplements are effective in dealing with chronic or prolonged insomnia.

2. Jet lag

When you travel to an area with a different time zone to the place of departure, jet lag can occur.

People who experience jet lag will be more refreshed and active at night and then sleepy and weak during the day. The reason is, the body has not fully adapted to the time difference.

Consumption of melatonin supplements is considered effective in helping to restore the sleep cycle. This supplement can also improve sleep quality, so jet lag sufferers can restore their energy better.

3. Delayed sleep cycle disorder

Delayed sleep cycle disorders are different from insomnia. In insomniacs, he will usually only sleep for a few hours a day.

While in people who experience sleep cycle delays, he can stay asleep for 8 hours, but generally in the early morning and will wake up during the day.

Melatonin supplements are considered better in treating this type of sleep disorder than other sleep disorders.

Several studies have found that taking melatonin supplements can help speed up the time it takes to fall asleep. Another benefit is that it makes you sleep more soundly and more energetic during activities during the day.

4. Sleep disorders in children

Not only in adults, sleep disorders can also be experienced by children, especially those who have a history of certain medical problems. Examples include ADHD, asthma, atopic dermatitis, and autism.

Restoring the quality and cycle of a child’s sleep is crucial to support their growth and development. In addition to therapy and changes in sleep habits that start from parents, the consumption of melatonin supplements is considered to be potential enough to improve a child’s sleep cycle.

But keep in mind that the dose of melatonin consumption in children cannot be the same as adults. You must consult a doctor first to find out the most appropriate dose and according to the condition of your little one.

5. Anxiety disorders before and after surgery

Anxiety disorders before and after surgery are experienced by almost 80 percent of patients. This condition causes them to have difficulty sleeping, so taking melatonin supplements can be one way to restore the sleep cycle.

However, not all patients will be given this supplement by a doctor. The reason is, several studies still show different results regarding the effectiveness of melatonin for this condition.

Side effects of taking melatonin supplements

In general, melatonin supplements are safe to take. But there are still some side effects that can arise after taking this supplement. Here’s an example:

  • Headache
  • Nauseous
  • Feeling sleepy
  • Mild tremor
  • Mild anxiety
  • A temporary feeling of depression
  • Easy to get angry
  • Stomach cramps
  • Decreased alertness
  • Disorientation

Not everyone who takes melatonin supplements will experience the same side effects. The most common side effects are headache, nausea, and drowsiness. Meanwhile, other impacts appear less frequently.

How to take the right melatonin supplement

How to take melatonin supplements can be different and depends on the instructions listed on the packaging or the doctor’s recommendations. It should also be noted that not all supplements contain the same levels of melatonin.

On average, the dose of melatonin consumed is 1-5 mg per day. However, this dose range can be anywhere from 0.1-10 mg per day, depending on the patient’s needs.

Supplements usually take 1-2 hours to take effect, so it is recommended that you take them two hours before bedtime. After taking melatonin supplements, avoid driving for at least five hours.

For those of you who are taking melatonin supplements for the first time, start with a low dose. Consult with your doctor so that you get the right dose and according to your condition.

People who can and should not take melatonin supplements

Melatonin supplements are usually prescribed by doctors to treat sleep problems in people over the age of 55. However, under certain conditions, this supplement can also be prescribed to younger patients, even children.

Please note that this supplement should not be taken by people who:

  • Have a history of melatonin allergy
  • Have a history of liver and kidney disease
  • Have a history of autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, or lupus
  • Have a history of seizure disorders
  • Are pregnant or breastfeeding

People with a history of diabetes and high blood pressure also need to consult a doctor before taking melatonin supplements. The reason is, this supplement can increase blood sugar levels and blood pressure in people who regularly take antihypertensive drugs.

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