Can melatonin help children and children with autism sleep better?

Posted by Joshua Margetts on

With the sales of melatonin increasing, parents are starting to use melatonin as a supplement to help with their childrens sleeping disorders.

There are many children that continue to struggle to get to sleep at night and have sleeping disorders. Scientific evidence and studies now show that melatonin can help children with insomnia or that struggle to get to sleep.

Melatonin which is a natural hormone produced in the body to regulate and promote sleep, has become popular amongst parents because of its safe qualities and few side effects.

It is thought that people may not produce as much melatonin as others maybe because of environmental factors and therefore a supplement can help them get to sleep.

However It should not be used if the sleep disorder is temporary or if it hasn’t been a long term problem that is consistently effecting them. Also it shouldn’t be used if your child is under 2 years old.

Sleeping disorders are just as common in children as in adults. Melatonin has shown to significantly help children with chronic difficulty falling asleep within 30 minutes of an age-appropriate bedtime resulting in less difficulty with falling asleep, earlier time of sleep onset, and more sleep at night.

It should be noted that melatonin should never substitute for healthy sleep practices: a regular, age-appropriate and consistent bedtime and bedtime routine, no caffeine and no electronics/screens before bedtime.


Can Melatonin help children with autism sleep better?

It has been shown that more than half of all children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) struggle with sleep disorders with insomnia being the most common. This is thought be a problem because children with autism can have different melatonin pathways and also lower than normal melatonin levels. Not only does it affect children but also many adults with autism also struggle with sleep disorders.

These sleep disorders can be a problem for children with autism as it can increase the autism symptoms such as repetitive behaviours and social difficulties.

Recently the seep hormone Melatonin has become popular among families and people that are affected by ASD given the low cost of the supplement and also the benefits.

Melatonin is naturally produced by the body to regulate the sleep-wake cycle. Its levels begin to rise shortly after nightfall, promoting sleep.

A study with 24 Children was taken where they all were diagnosed with ASD with the parents reporting that they did not fall asleep within 30 minutes of bed time three or more nights a week. A positive response to the melatonin was falling asleep within 30 minutes five or more nights a week.

Seven of the children managed to achieve this response with just a 1mg nightly dose of melatonin taken 30 minutes before bedtime. Another fourteen achieved it with a 3mg dose and another three children with a 6mg dose with non of the dose levels producing any worrisome side effects.

Many other studies have show that melatonin improved sleep in 63 percent of children with autism that received it. The children managed to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.


What dose should you take?

When sleep problems start to develop, behavioural strategies are normally prescribed first such as a bedtime routine or staying away from television and avoiding certain foods before bed.

When these strategies don’t work then it can be a good choice to introduce melatonin to help develop a good sleep routine.

It is recommended to start with a 1mg dose and to increase it to 3mg if there is no improvement.

Please always consult a doctor before taking any medical supplements.

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Why Getting A Goods Night’s Sleep Is Essential For Your Wellbeing 

Posted by Adam Barker on

We spend 1/3rd of our lives sleeping – or at least we’re supposed to. Three out of five of us aren’t getting the recommended 7-8 hours sleep per night that we need to give our bodies the best possible benefit from this downtime. Frequent lack of sleep has been associated with weight gain, depression, and of course, tiredness. We’ve put together 5 reasons that she should start taking your sleeping habits seriously to make sure they aren’t having a negative effect on your wellbeing.

1. It’s Great For Your Memory

Sleep gives your brain an opportunity to reset and consolidate everything that it has taken in that day. People who get plenty of sleep have been shown to retain significantly more information from the previous day than their sleepless counterparts – essentially, they were learning more. Think that delaying sleep so you can study late into the night is going to give you a boost? Wrong.

2. Sleep = Gains

Sleep slows down your body and frees up blood from other resources to instead deliver nutrients to tired muscles to aid in their recovery. Put simply, if you’ve spent all day in the gym working for gains in muscle mass not getting enough sleep will be your undoing. Even if you’re not looking to make gains in the gym, giving your body time to recover during sleep is essential to make sure you prevent injuries and muscle fatigue.

3. Sleeping Regulates Your Appetite

People who regularly get the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep a night have higher levels of appetite-regulating hormones, and lower level of appetite-stimulating hormones. Ever wondered why you crave food to “keep you going” after not getting enough sleep? This is why.

4. Sleep Sharpens Your Focus

Children who get enough sleep every night have been shown to be more focused, more emotionally stable, and better behaved. It’s easy to ignore this and put it down to them being kids – but wouldn’t the world be a little bit better if all of us were a touch more focused and nicer to each other? After all, aren’t we all just big kids?

5. The ‘Beauty Sleep’ Effect is Real.

Clinical trials have demonstrated that people who don’t get enough sleep were rated to look older and more tired by their peers. It also found that lack of sleep exposed you to greater risks from the sun damaging your skin.

So treat yourself. Fix yourself up with the ultimate cosy bedroom space, make time for those bedtime rituals, and get the sleep you deserve. Your mind and body will thank you. Thinking better, looking better, eating better. Who knew sleep was the ultimate life hack?

Need to kick-start your good sleeping patterns? Try our melatonin gummies here

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Mistakes with Melatonin, and how you should really take it

Posted by Sebastien Vanderlinden on

Using melatonin correctly can help sleep and mood problems; its naturally produced in the body, but vitamin supplements can be taken to aid the entire sleeping process, giving your body a natural, healthy and well needed rest. Here are some of the common mistakes people make, and guidelines to use melatonin the right way.

Mistake #1: Melatonin is a sleep hormone

People believe that melatonin is effectively a sleeping pill – wrong; the more correct way to think of melatonin as a ‘darkness’ signaler, that is, it tells the brain that it needs to prepare for a night time or winter cycle. If taken in the evening or when it’s dark, melatonin can speed up sleep preparation, and it can tell the body clock to shift its sleep cycle to an earlier time.

Mistake #2: I can take melatonin at any time.

If melatonin is used during daytime brightness, it can cause adverse effects. If the body clock is receiving conflicting daytime light signals and dark signals from melatonin, it can malfunction and not work properly when it is time to go to sleep later.

Mistake #3: Melatonin is a natural supplement, so it can’t do any harm.

Taking melatonin at the wrong time of day can cause some health risks, as daytime melatonin has been shown, albeit in rare cases, to cause depression. This makes sense, especially when you consider that melatonin causes us to pull back, withdraw, and become distant – the classic hibernation response. It’s best to avoid using melatonin that could be in our system during the day, and only consume the supplement as you’re about to set off to sleep.


Mistake #4: The dosage amount isn’t important.

The problem with melatonin is that it was discovered long before scientists really understood what it does and how much you need. For example, in the late 80’s and early 90’s, we thought melatonin was a sleep hormone. New evidence shows that adult males only need 1,5mg, and the average female needs only 1mg. So the average melatonin supplement is 20 – 50 times more than we need! If you are using regular melatonin tablets, you can cut the pill into fourths, otherwise, try to find the smallest pill size available. If you are taking time-released melatonin, do not break the pill, as this will ruin the time-release.

Mistake #5: I don’t take melatonin, so I don’t have to worry.

Actually, this could be one of the costliest mistakes people make. Melatonin is an essential nighttime hormone. When in the body at the right time, it does wonderful things, such as help the heart and vital organs rest at night. Melatonin also acts as a powerful antioxidant; while it shuts the body down, it cleans the toxins and free radicals from cells.
But we often do things that keep melatonin from being produced, and that can be deadly. When we stay up late at night or work night shifts, we keep our body from producing melatonin. This increases the risk of hypertension, heart disease, diabetes and cancer. Studies show women night-shift workers have a 500% higher risk of breast cancer and male night shift workers have a 50% increased risk of colo-rectal and bone cancer. While not realising it, many people increase this risk with inconsistent sleep/wake schedules – late night studying or partying or shift work schedules.

How should I take melatonin?

The first thing to know about melatonin is that its half-life is very short, and is only active in your system for about 20 minutes. This is why it is important to use different types of melatonin for different reasons:

Induce sleep or shift sleep to an earlier schedule (1hr+)


  • If you take more than an hour to fall asleep, or you need to shift your sleep more than an hour, consider taking time-released melatonin. It is also important to use a high-quality, standardised melatonin supplement. Try to find the lowest dose available. 
  • When to take: Depending on the severity of the sleep problem, take time-released melatonin 1 to 3 hours prior to the time you usually fall asleep. Since time release melatonin only lasts for 3 – 4 hours, any need to shift sleep schedules more than 3 hours may require taking another pill in 3 or 4 hours.
  • Cautions: Melatonin should not be taken if eyes are exposed to bright sunlight, and melatonin should be avoided if operating any vehicle. If attempting sleep shifts of more than 1 hour, light therapy should also be used. Do not use melatonin for more than two weeks at a time.

Induce sleep (less than 1hr)


  • If it takes an hour or less to fall asleep, then standard melatonin in the lowest mg size is a good option.
  • When to take: One to two hours before desired sleep time.
  • Cautions: See above

Nighttime awakenings and early morning insomnia

For nighttime awakenings that last less than one hour, consider sublingual melatonin is released immediately into the blood stream, and isn’t metabolised through the digestive system.

  • For frequent or awakenings that last more than one hour, consider taking 1 sublingual and a time-released melatonin tablet. Take the time release tablet first and then place the sublingual tablet under your tongue.
  • Cautions: If you need to get up in the morning within 2-3 hours, Take regular instead of time release melatonin. Time release melatonin may last into the waking hours, causing confusion and mood problems. Do not take melatonin if you awaken less than one hour before you need to get up.
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