It is estimated that roughly 34 million Americans use sleep remedy melatonin annually since it is well-known due to the effective and natural sleep aid. Only in 2014, this supplement received $378 million.
Basically, melatonin is a hormone product based on a hormone naturally found in the body and working by regulating our body’s sleep cycles. It is usually made synthetically in a laboratory.
It needs to be noted that this is not a medicine and should not be overused.
If the blinds have trouble with their sleep, melatonin can help them deal with the sleep disorders. Not only the blinds, this supplement can also effectively work with children with autism and mental retardation. In some cases, people use it as they have to cope with the sleep problems caused by shift work or jet lag, but it is not likely to work well.
As an analysis in the journal PloS One in 2013, people using melatonin generally fall asleep 7 minutes faster and sleep 8 minutes longer on average.
In general, the uses of the supplement possibly include:
– Correct certain sleep disorders in blind people;
– Correct sleeping problems in children with autism and intellectual disabilities;
– Reduce pain in people with a certain kind of headache called a “cluster headache”;
– Improve alertness in people with jet lag;
– Help insomnia;
– Reduce cluster headaches;
– Decrease sunburn;
– Improve the effectiveness of certain cancer medications used to fight tumors in the breast, lung, kidney, liver, pancreas, stomach, colon, prostate, and decrease some side effects of cancer treatment;
– Decrease symptoms of a movement disorder or tardive dyskinesia (TD);
– Reduce anxiety before surgery;
– Improve elderly people’s sleep after they stop using a type of drug named benzodiazepines;
– Help decrease symptoms in patients who are giving up smoking;
– Melatonin cream may work as a sun block when helping diminish sunburn if you use it before going into the sun.
In addition, we do not know for sure whether melatonin is effective for people in other conditions, involving ringing in the ears, osteoporosis, epilepsy, birth control, aging, and others, or not.
However, the researchers discovered that approximately 20 percent of users reported next-day grogginess after using the supplements. The Council for Responsible Nutrition, a supplement trade group, also warned users to be cautious before driving the next day after taking this product.
It is better not to use melatonin if you are:
– allergic to any ingredient in melatonin;
– taking immunosuppressants, corticosteroids, or nifedipine;
– with a history of immune system disorders, liver disease, or stroke;
– pregnant or breast-feeding.
Moreover, there are some medicines and/or medical conditions that MAY INTERACT with melatonin. Therefore, it is crucial for you to ask for advice from your doctor before taking melatonin.