© 2024 WXPR
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Study warns some taking excess amounts of melatonin to help them fall asleep


Even in the comfiest of beds, many have a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep.

Even teenagers in our area take them daily, like Brianna Britton, a 14-year-old student in Wisconsin Rapids.

"I feel happy," she said describing how she feels in the morning after taking it the night before.

Her mom, Jalaine Britton said she agrees, "... [Her] moods are a lot better. Instead of her waking up crabby, she feels refreshed and ready to start the day at school."

Britton said it also helps her regulate her sleeping habits.

"I use my phone less," the teen told News 9, "If I take it, I get off my phone and just relax for me to fall asleep."

She is not the only one a growing number adults, dating back to 2006, are taking the supplement. But this study suggests we may be taking too much.

Adams County Public Health Officer, Cody Przybylski said it all comes down to understanding what melatonin is and how much to take.

"The good thing is that it is produced naturally and if you need an extra kick to go to sleep it could help you do that," said Przybylski, "The negative effects is when you're not taking melatonin consistently.. at the same time or taking improper dosages."

Improper dosages - anything over the recommended 3 to 8 milligrams a day - can actually have an adverse effect, helping you fall asleep but not stay asleep. It could also have this effect if you are not consistent with the amount you take, even if you take it every once in a while.

"... taking 23 mgs of melatonin, She is way beyond her recommended 3-8 mgs a day. So, I can see how its making her fall asleep right away. But her body is producing natural melatonin, that's where its disturbing her, affecting whether she falls asleep or stays asleep longer," he said.

The drug is also not regulated by the USFDA which means it may not have exactly what's on the label. This could also contribute to why people are going over the dosage amount.

There are alternatives to taking melatonin or to aid when the dosage does not feel like enough.

Adams County Public Health Officer gave News 9 these tips for better sleep Put down the phone an hour or two before bed.

Try not to eat too much before going to sleep -- especially dairy

Keep your blinds shut tight and turn off the t-v. Your natural melatonin thrives off of darkness.

Up North Updates
* indicates required
Related Content