Blame it on the pandemic, but lately, I’ve been having a tricky time falling asleep, staying asleep, and sleeping deeply. My head will typically race with thoughts, or I’ll simply not be tired. I’ve also been traveling in and out of the country, as well as domestically, and with the difference in time zones, my jet lag has been at an all-time high.
To help, I’ve been taking sleep gummies that are formulated with melatonin, the soothing natural hormone that promotes sleep. As someone who doesn’t often take pills, I’ve been wondering if too much melatonin is a bad thing.
How does melatonin work?
It should be noted that melatonin is made by the body naturally and has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It also helps to regulate the immune system, blood pressure, and body temperature.
Oddly enough, the body is filled with melatonin naturally, but it decreases with age — which is why people reach for it in form of supplements, sprays, or pills. So if you think about it, taking the over-the-counter supplement regularly as you age isn’t a terrible thing.
So is it addictive?
But is it addictive? The instant answer is no. However, it’s important to know that although it’s natural, it doesn’t mean it’s good for you. It’s a good idea to research or speak to your doctor before trying anything.
The good news is you won’t grow dependent on it or have sleep symptoms from taking it. It also doesn’t cause any grogginess or foggy feelings when you wake up, and there is no way to grow a tolerance towards it. But again, as long as you are not taking too much, you will be fine.
Speaking of too much, the general dose is 0.3-5 mg. It’s a good rule of thumb to start with the lowest dosage (0.3), and work your way up to the effective dose for you, if need be. Used as a sleeping aide, some side effects can be drowsiness, nausea, and stomach cramps.
In comparison to other sleeping pills that could promote sleepwalking, muscle weakness, or extreme nausea, it’s really not that bad. Like all things, it’s wise to consult your doctor before taking. This is especially important if you are taking other medications. Be sure to ask a specialist if you are unsure. And although melatonin isn’t addictive, it isn’t advised to use it every night as a crutch.
If you fall asleep easier with noise, try this white noise combo, and learn how to create the optimal sleeping environment.