Yes, melatonin is safe for kids [even for prolonged use] and it’s very effective in most cases. It is readily available in supplement form - like our Luna Kids sleep aid [and even comes in gummies for children]. Although many children fall asleep with little difficulty, melatonin has become a commonly recommended supplement for those who need help falling asleep.
Studies show that up to 75% of school-aged children don’t get enough sleep.
Not getting enough sleep is bad for kids as it can affect your child’s mood, attention span and their ability to retain what they learn in school. Poor sleep has even been linked with health issues such as childhood obesity. Imagine that!
For these reasons [and more,] parents now consider giving their kids melatonin to help them sleep better. And even though melatonin is considered safe for adults, many parents still wonder if melatonin is safe for their precious little ones.
Before we dive into all of that, first…
What is Melatonin?
Melatonin [popularly known as the sleep hormone,] is a hormone produced by your brain’s pineal gland.
What it does is to help your body get ready for sleep by setting your circadian rhythm [the body’s internal clock that regulates your sleep-wake cycles].
Aside from setting the stage for bedtime, melatonin also plays a key role in regulating your blood pressure, cortisol levels, body temperature and immune functions.
Most people take melatonin to cope with popular sleep-related issues such as; Insomnia, jet lag, and other circadian rhythm disorders.
Is Melatonin Effective in Helping Kids Fall Asleep?
There are a couple of reasons why your kids might be finding it difficult falling asleep. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder [ADHD], autism, and other neurological conditions are some of the usual culprits.
An analysis of 35 studies in children with autism showed that melatonin supplements helped them fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.
Also, an analysis of 13 studies found that children with a neurological condition fell asleep 29 minutes faster and slept 48 minutes longer on average when taking melatonin.
So, is Melatonin Safe for Kids?
Absolutely. But the best long-term solution to your kid’s sleeping issues is to keep trying to help them establish good bedtime routines.
When you’re just introducing melatonin to your kids, start with the lowest dosage.
Many children will respond favorably to low doses [0.5 mg or 1 mg] especially if they take it 30 to 90 minutes before bedtime. And, most children who benefit from melatonin [even those with ADHD] don't need more than 3 to 6 mg of melatonin.
Yeah, melatonin can cause some side effects in children such as; headaches, bed-wetting, excessive sweating, morning grogginess, nausea, Et Cetera. This is why it’s best to start your kids on a low dosage to see how they react to melatonin supplements.
That’s it folks -- but before you go…