Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone produced by your brain when it’s preparing for sleep. Darkness and relaxation can trigger the release of melatonin, causing you to feel sleepy. Aside from the naturally occurring melatonin, you can also use melatonin supplements, like melatonin gummies, to increase the amount of melatonin in your system. Melatonin is generally considered to be safe, and is often used to return to a sleep schedule after a period of irregular sleep (1).
While some people use melatonin regularly it's effectively used on rare occasions to get back on a sleep schedule after deviating from normal sleep. People that travel for work, or change from night to day shift can find melatonin extremely helpful for lessening the time it takes to get back to their desired sleep schedule after a period of time of irregular sleep.
The short answer is yes, melatonin is safe for kids to take. The safety record of melatonin is exceptional. Studies of children and adults using melatonin for more than three years have shown no significant side effects.
With the wide availability of melatonin in many homes and in attractive forms like gummies, you might expect there to be unintentional overdoses in children.
However, according to the Central Ohio Poison Center, of the 800 children per year that they manage with unintentional ingestion of melatonin gummies (in many cases entire bottles, up to 90 gummies) no one has significant effects.
If you have questions, call the poison center at 1-800-222-1222. It is free and confidential and they will address any specific questions you might have. Save the number in your cell phone or call for a free magnet with the poison center number and an information packet how to poison proof your home.
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The short answer is yes, dogs can take melatonin. The melatonin dogs can take is generally the same melatonin humans can take, as long as it’s pure melatonin without additives. Other sleep pills and sleep drugs can be unsafe for dogs, so if you’re going to give your dog melatonin, be sure it’s non-narcotic. Natural calming agents like passiflora extract are generally considered safe for dogs as well.
Melatonin works in dogs and humans in a similar way. It regulates your sleep cycle or your circadian rhythm. The natural cycle is that once it gets dark, the body gives a signal to the pineal gland. The pineal gland starts to increase the production of the chemical. This increased melatonin is responsible for making you feel sleepy.
Similarly, the brain also signals the gland when the sun comes up. This way, the gland decreases the production of melatonin, causing you to wake up. This is called the circadian rhythm.
Melatonin is considered one of the safest options for sleep aids for pregnant women. Melatonin is very subtle and doesn’t directly affect blood circulation or lung function, which is a common concern with other sleep aids. For these reasons, melatonin is a great sleep aid for pregnant women (2).
Pregnant women are more prone to sleep disorders, including obstructive sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome, and gastroesophageal reflux disorder. These sleep disorders can affect how much quality sleep the woman gets. Melatonin is often used as a supplement to improve sleep because it's a hormone that fosters tiredness. The body naturally produces more melatonin at night, but as we age, the amount of melatonin decreases. Adding extra melatonin through supplements may help encourage tiredness in order to get enough rest.
There have not been enough legitimate scientific studies on specifically melatonin use while pregnant or breastfeeding.
It is generally considered safe, but you should talk to your doctor before using any supplement while pregnant or breastfeeding. They will know how to navigate your specific situation the best.
Melatonin gummies are just as effective as melatonin pills, and can sometimes be absorbed in the body even faster than pill form, as they dissolve faster in the stomach.
Melatonin gummies like Sleep Boost are a perfect option for people that have issues swallowing pills, or just enjoy the gummies themselves. Sleep Boost gummies are the best tasting gummies on the market, hands down!
The short answer is it’s pretty difficult to die from a melatonin overdose. While there can be adverse effects from taking too much melatonin, subjects of a melatonin study were given 1000mg melatonin daily for weeks, while a normal dose is 1-2mg, and they experienced only minor symptoms (3).
That’s not to say you should take more than a recommended dose, as it’s possible that you could experience much worse symptoms from an overdose. 1-2mg is perfect for the majority of people, but if you feel like you need more, talk to your doctor to make sure a higher dose is appropriate for your health situation.
Melatonin, even in high doses, is not reported to produce a euphoric effect. So unless you really enjoy the feeling of being tired and falling asleep, melatonin wouldn’t be considered a drug that can get you high (4).
Before taking any medication, or medication combination you need to consult your doctor to be sure that it’s appropriate and safe for your specific health situation.
That being said, there are no known negative interactions, or interactions period, between melatonin and Tylenol. Other sleep aids and cold medicines like Tylenol PM contain a much more dangerous (in comparison to melatonin) chemicals like diphenhydramine hydrochloride for a sleep aid, and are sold over the counter (5).
Assuming your doctor says it’s OK, you should be safe to take melatonin with Tylenol, or acetaminophen.