Melatonin For Sleep Aid – Pros and Cons

Melatonin is an all natural sleep aide. It’s secreted by the pineal gland, a small pea size gland in the center of the brain, as our eyes register the fall of darkness. At night melatonin is produced to help our bodies regulate our sleep and wake cycles. The amount of melatonin produced by our body lessens as we get older. Scientists believe this may be why young people have less of a problem sleeping than older people will. Though we create our own melatonin, this can also be bought in the form of supplements.

It is believed that melatonin supplements make it easier sleep and ease jet lag, without the hazards or side effects of prescription and over the counter sleeping pills. Melatonin may have many other uses and has been reported to make people feel better, strengthen the immune system, and reduce free radicals in the body. Currently, research is being done to also determine melatonin’s effect as an anti-oxidant. Tests are still being done now because there is much still to be learned about melatonin and its effects on the human body.

Many parents are now offering melatonin to their children who have been diagnosed with hyperactivity or autism. Some parents claim the effects of the melatonin has calmed and relaxed anxiety ridden children. While this may be true for some children, it’s not the answer for everyone. Check with your pediatrician before starting any supplement programs with your child.

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