Side Effects Of Melatonin: 8 Groups Should Avoid Taking Melatonin
September 28, 2020//;;by;Terry Cralle//;;
Melatonin, also known as the hormone of darkness is a hormone responsible for the regulation of your sleep-wake cycle. However, promoting and regulating sleep is only one of its physiological functions.
This hormone plays an important role in bodily functions, the functions of organs like the kidney or liver, and helps regulate blood pressure and cardiovascular issues. Melatonin is also shown useful in cases of tumors and cancers, where it prevents oxidative stress to promote the growth of cancerous cells.
Now, all of this sounds rather impressive, and sure enough, because melatonin is a naturally produced hormone coming from the very brain, no one would suspect it harmful. However, melatonin supplements, on the other hand, are raising some eyebrows in the medical community.
Over the past few years, melatonin supplements have been studied concerning their possible side effects. Turns out, melatonin intake can cause a dozen of adverse effects, which can pose a long-term danger. In the following paragraphs, well take a look at the major side effects, every melatonin producing company would hide from you. So, lets get started!
Important Information About All Medicines
Never take more than the prescribed dose. If you suspect that you or someone else might have taken an overdose of this medicine, go to the accident and emergency department of your local hospital at once. Take the container with you, even if it is empty.
This medicine is for you. Never give it to other people even if their condition appears to be the same as yours.
If you are having an operation or dental treatment, always tell the person carrying out the treatment which medicines you are taking.
If you buy any medicines, check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take with your other medicines.
Do not keep out-of-date or unwanted medicines. Take them to your local pharmacy which will dispose of them for you.
If you have any questions about this medicine ask your pharmacist.
Further reading and references
Melatonin For Gerd The Final Verdict
Melatonin has been proven to be an effective and safe supplement for relieving symptoms of GERD as well in treating stomach ulcers. Studies have shown it to be safe even for long-term use. Side effects are rarely seen if the supplement is used at low dosages.
Melatonin production by stomach cells is 400 times greater than that produced by the pineal gland in the brain. This underlines the importance of this hormone in gastrointestinal health. Research done to highlight its role in the health of the gut has yielded definite results and has made us realize the importance of this hormone in maintaining gut health.
You May Like: How To Sleep With Lower Back Pain And Sciatica
Adverse Effects Of Melatonin Intake: Overview
Consumption of food supplements that contain melatonin or mainly contain melatonin has shown adverse effects in numerous studies. The most frequently reported side effects include; headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, tremors, migraine, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, nightmares, vivid dreams, and irritability. There were even cases of supplement abuse for suicide attempts through melatonin overdose.
The reason for such adverse effects was traced to an incorrect presentation of the amount of melatonin a bottle of supplements truly contains. Investigation shows that melatonin supplement bottles can have;4 times more melatonin than indicated. This can affect ones health significantly, because of the higher the dose, the serious and more frequent side effects.
However, this is not the only reason side effects occur. Sometimes, doctors do NOT prescribe a suitable dosage, or the patients decide to dose themselves as they want. Some people even tend to drink alcohol with melatonin, hoping to emphasize the sedative effects. But, they just cause even more serious side effects.
Not A Regular Sleep Aid
Although many see melatonin as a miracle cure for insomnia, it may actually do just the opposite, and promote insomnia over time. Taking melatonin for an extended period of time your body may acclimate and re-adjust and produce less over time which will work against you, ;says;Michael Grandner, a sleep researcher at the University of Pennsylvania.
Youre better off using melatonin rarely, for example, when readjusting to jet-lag, rather than to help you sleep ;and never as a regular sleep aid.
You May Like: Does Ice Help Carpal Tunnel
Is It Habit Forming
According to the National Sleep Foundation, experts do not believe that melatonin is addictive on a short term basis. Unlike other sleep medicines, it does not cause symptoms of withdrawal when people stop using it.
However, scientists need to carry out more long-term research to confirm that this sleep aid is not habit-forming.
Some people do become dependent on melatonin to sleep. They may find that when they stop taking this supplement, they have a harder time falling asleep.
As with any supplement, people need to check with their doctor before they take melatonin. Getting advice from a doctor can help prevent avoid adverse effects, dependency, and possible interactions between melatonin and other medications.
Are Melatonin Supplements Safe
Melatonin is likely safe for most people when taken for a short-term, studies show. However melatonin may cause side effects including headache, daytime sleepiness, short-lived depression symptoms, stomach cramps, dizziness and irritability.
Melatonin supplements should be avoided in pregnancy, during breastfeeding or when trying to conceive. Children or adolescents should not use melatonin supplements as melatonin may interact with other hormones and interfere with their development.
There is some evidence that melatonin acts as an antioxidant, so it may interfere with some cancer treatments, according to the American Cancer Society. Patients currently undergoing cancer treatment should speak with their doctors before taking melatonin supplements.
Melatonin may increase the strength of the immune system, which can cause problems for people with severe allergies, rheumatoid arthritis, lymphoma and other conditions linked to overactive immune systems, according to the American Cancer Society. People with immune system disorders should speak with a doctor before taking melatonin supplements as melatonin may weaken the effectiveness of immunosuppressants.
Several drugs and treatments may interact with melatonin. Birth control increases melatonin levels in the body, so taking melatonin supplements may cause high melatonin levels. Taking melatonin supplements alongside sedatives such as benzodiazepines may cause excessive sleepiness.
Read Also: Does Toothache Cause Neck Pain
What Does Research Say About Melatonin And Gerd
As per conventional beliefs, the pineal gland is responsible for producing and releasing melatonin in the body. However, researchers have found that cells in the stomach and the intestines also secrete melatonin. These cells are responsible for maintaining melatonin levels during the day.
A study by Polish researchers in 2013, published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences, found that mean melatonin levels were lower in patients with GERD and recurrent stomach ulcers, as compared to healthy individuals. The study also concluded that lower levels of melatonin in the GI tract contribute to the onset and progression of many ailments of the stomach and the intestines. The researchers suggested that melatonin supplementation can be beneficial if used for therapeutic purposes.
Another study found that lower melatonin levels in the innermost lining of the stomach can give rise to spontaneous ulcers. The research showed how supplementation of melatonin can reverse these ulcers.
In the above-mentioned study, researchers gave omeprazole to 175 patients, while 176 patients received a supplement containing melatonin, L-tryptophan and B vitamins over a period of 40 days. All the patients given the melatonin supplement showed complete disappearance of symptoms compared with only 66% of the patients in the omeprazole group who experienced complete relief from symptoms.
Toxicology And Potential For Harm
The acute toxicity of melatonin as seen in both animal and human studies is extremely low. Melatonin may cause minor adverse effects, such as headache, insomnia, rash, upset stomach, and nightmares. In animals, an LD50 could not be established. Even 800 mg/kg bodyweight was not lethal. Studies of human subjects given varying doses of melatonin for 30-45 days, and followed with an elaborate battery of biochemical tests to detect potential toxicity, have concluded that, aside from drowsiness, all findings were normal at the end of the test period.
Animal studies suggest that melatonin can downregulate the pituitary/gonadal axis resulting in hypogonadism and/or delayed puberty. However chronic administration of low-dose melatonin in men did not alter blood levels of testosterone or luteinizing hormone. One case of extremely high melatonin levels associated with delayed puberty and hypogonadism has been reported. Pubertal development and resolution of the hypogonadism occurred spontaneously as melatonin levels declined over several years. Recent experimental evidence demonstrates that melatonin reduces sperm motility and that long-term administration inhibits testicular aromatase levels.
Preliminary animal studies suggest that melatonin may accelerate the development of autoimmune conditions. Melatonin transiently exacerbated neurologic symptoms in 1 patient with multiple sclerosis.
Recommended Reading: Does Osteoporosis Cause Neck Pain
How Long Before Bed Should You Take Melatonin
Several studies have been conducted to know how long before bed should we take Melatonin for the best of results. Generally, it is said that Melatonin should be taken around 20 to 30 minutes before bed. It has been found that Melatonin supplement taking this time before bed improves sleep efficiency.
Melatonin is an important hormone produced by Pineal gland in the body. To maintain a proper sleep people, tend to take Melatonin supplements. The synthetic Melatonin works effectively and is generally safe to take but like everything there should be a limit of time span. More than 2 years of intake of Melatonin supplement may cause a range of health problems.
This Supplement May Help You Sleep But What Are Melatonin’s Side Effects
Posted by Amber Cloves on April 22, 2019
We have all been through the frustration of tossing and turning all night long and never being able to fall asleep but solving your sleep issues with melatonin may not be the solution you’re looking for. Yes, your body does naturally produce the hormone melatonin which helps regulate your circadian system and sleep cycles but too much melatonin can also be mess up your system. Just like every other pill or supplement, we take there are side effects, some of which that happen more common than others and those are the one we will be focusing on.
You May Like: Is It Painful To Cut Your Wrist
How To Take Melatonin
- Before you start the treatment, read the manufacturer’s printed information leaflet from inside the pack. It will give you more information about melatonin and will provide you with a full list of the side-effects which you may experience from taking it.
- Take melatonin exactly as your doctor tells you to. For adults the dose is usually one 2 mg tablet daily, taken 1-2 hours before bedtime. For children with ASD the usual starting dose is 2 mg taken 30 minutes to one hour before bedtime. Your child’s doctor may increase the dose slowly to get a better response.
- Take the tablet with a snack or after eating some food. This will help the medicine to work later into the night. Swallow the tablet whole – do not break or crush the tablet because it is designed to release melatonin slowly over a few hours.
- If you forget to take a tablet at the usual time but you remember before you go to sleep, take it when you remember. If you do not remember until the following day, just take the next dose as usual. Do not take two doses together to make up for a forgotten dose.
Getting The Most From Your Treatment
- Do not take melatonin for longer than your doctor advises. It can be prescribed for up to 13 weeks for adults over 55.
- Do not drink alcohol while you are taking melatonin because it will reduce the medicine’s effectiveness in helping you to sleep.
- Try to keep your regular appointments with your doctor. This is so your progress can be monitored.
- There are some general recommendations that may help promote good sleep. Try to reduce the amount of caffeine you drink, especially in the afternoon and evening. Try to avoid eating heavy meals or drinking alcohol before bedtime. Exercise early in the day, rather than in the evening.
Also Check: What Can Cause Neck Pain And Swelling
Who Can Take Melatonin
When used properly, oral melatonin is safe for most adults. Since the supplement helps regulate sleep, it can be taken for different circadian rhythm conditions. For example:
- Jet lag;Traveling through different time zones can cause temporary sleep problems in which your body’s internal clock gets out of sync. This can reduce sleepiness or affect the quality of sleep.
- Delayed sleep phase disorder;With this disorder, your nightly sleep might be delayed by several hours compared with the average person’s. So instead of your body preparing to fall asleep between 9 p.m. and 11 p.m., your body may not naturally feel sleepy until 2 a.m. or later. As a result, you may get only a few hours of sleep each night.
- Shift work disorder;If you work overnight and sleep during the day, you may have difficulty falling asleep. Melatonin can help enhance the quality of daytime sleep.
- Insomnia;This is an inability to fall sleep or stay asleep during the night. There are different underlying causes for insomnia, such as depression, anxiety, and pain. Melatonin helps induce sleep for occasional insomnia.
- Sleep disorders in the blind;Because totally blind people can’t perceive light, they may have difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep. Melatonin can help restore sleep patterns in the blind, improving their sleep quality.
Surprising Side Effects Of Taking Melatonin Supplements Says Science
Melatonin is a hormone that is produced in the brain. It regulates the body’s circadian rhythm, hormones secreted by the endocrine system, and sleep patterns.
Experts may recommend a melatonin supplement for certain conditions like jet lag or insomnia, but those supplements are synthetically made in a laboratory. Usually, the supplements come in pill form, but they can also be found in a form that you place in the cheek or under your tongue so it gets absorbed quickly into the body.
If you’re looking to take melatonin, here are 5 side effects that you may experience. Read on, and for more on how to eat healthy, don’t miss 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now.
You May Like: Can Blueberries Cause Stomach Pain
The Melatonin Side Effects You Should Know About
Yes, it could cause insomnia.
If youre like the 88 percent of women regularly not sleeping through the night , youve probably found yourself looking for alternatives to counting sheep.
Last year, the National Institutes of Health reported that 3.1 million Americans used melatonin supplements to fall asleep. Melatonin is a natural hormone secreted by your brain that helps regulate your circadian rhythm, or when your body wants to wake up and go to sleep, says Jocelyn Cheng, M.D., a neurologist at NYU Langone Health.
Studies have actually shown that melatonin can help people with sleep disorders fall asleep anywhere between 27 and 50 minutes faster.
But before you go buy out your local vitamin shop’s stock, remember: A supplement is not a regulated drug, so theres always a question as to whether youre getting what it claims to be, warns Rachel Salas, M.D., a neurologist with a focus on sleep disorders and sleep medicine at Johns Hopkins Medicine.
One study actually found that 71 percent of melatonin supplements did not meet the claims on the label, with some listing up to five times the amount of the hormone than it actually contained. Look for supplements displaying seals from the United States Pharmacopeial Convention or NSF International so you know the manufacturers are legit.
Of course, like any drug or supplement, melatonin can come with some side effects.
Does Melatonin Cause Bad Or Vivid Dreams
In general, you might have more vivid dreams if youre anxious or stressed. Certain sleep disorders, such as obstructive sleep apnea, and taking medications such as beta blockers and antihistamines, can also lead to an increase in vivid dreams and/or nightmares.
However, according to Dr. Drerup, its unclear if taking extra melatonin before going to bed causes bad or vivid dreams. Theres no conclusive evidence as to how exactly your dreams are affected by taking melatonin supplements, she says.
Also Check: Is Heat Good For Nerve Pain
Can Melatonin Cause Gas/ Worsen Ibs Related Symptoms
Approximately 3 weeks ago I started trying melatonin to manage my sleep. I was taking between 8-12 mg per night and was sleeping well, but I’ve also noticed an increase in gas/ acid reflux during that time. My diet hasn’t changed in those 3 weeks, so I am wondering if Melatonin could be the cause? I’ve read that upset stomach is common, but I’m not sure they’re the same problem. Any thoughts or experiences would be really helpful. I’ve stopped taking as of tonight to see whether this problem goes away.
Natural Sources Of Melatonin
Our body produces melatonin naturally. However, certain lifestyle habits and health problems can hamper the production of melatonin. These include sleep disruption, alcohol, caffeine, blood sugar imbalances, exposure to light, stress and age, among others.
There are certain foods that contain melatonin, like:
- Daytime sleepiness
Also Check: What Pain Medication Is Best For Nerve Pain
Who Shouldnt Take Melatonin
Some herbal and dietary supplements can interact negatively with prescription medication, and melatonin is no exception.
Before you take this supplement to improve the quality of your sleep, speak with your doctor.
Melatonin doesnt interact with every prescription drug, but it can make some medicines less effective, like blood pressure and seizure medication. It can also boost blood sugar and is therefore not recommended for people with diabetes, warns Dean.
The supplement can also interact with blood-thinning medication, immunosuppressants, and corticosteroids. Theres also the risk of increased drowsiness when taken with birth control pills, depressants, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.
If you have chronic pain due to an inflammatory disease, melatonin might seem like a safe solution for better sleep. But this supplement isnt recommended for people who have an autoimmune disease like lupus or;arthritis.
Melatonin can stimulate the immune system, triggering an inflammatory response and worsening these diseases.
Melatonin may be safe during pregnancy and while breastfeeding in small amounts. Talk to your doctor for dose recommendations.
Melatonin is preferred by some because its non-habit forming and a natural sleep aid. But the supplement isnt right for everyone, and side effects can occur if not taken properly.