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Get Some Sleep: Melatonin's a great solution - for some
April 19th, 2011
05:03 PM ET

Get Some Sleep: Melatonin's a great solution - for some

Lisa Shives, M.D., is the founder of Northshore Sleep Medicine in Evanston, Illinois. She blogs on Tuesdays on The Chart. Read more from her at Dr. Lisa Shives’ Sleep Better Blog.
A frazzled, 45-year-old woman came into my office the other day complaining of longstanding, intermittent bouts of insomnia.

“The frustrating thing is I watch my husband take his melatonin and ‘poof’ it’s like the sandman flew in through the window and sprinkled sand in his eyes. He is out. Me? Nothing. I lie there for hours even if I take two or three pills.”

I hear this lot. Melatonin works remarkably well for some people and has no affect on others.

Melatonin is a naturally occurring neuro-hormone that is secreted by the pineal gland in the brain. When released from the pineal gland, melatonin causes drowsiness and a decrease in core body temperature. The levels of melatonin rise throughout the evening hours and peak in the middle of the night. That is if there is relative darkness. Even ordinary room light (approximately 100 lux) can cause a rapid suppression in melatonin. This is why sleep doctors are always telling people, at least people who have trouble falling asleep, that they should avoid reading in bed.

Research suggests that melatonin not only helps us sleep and maintain our 24-hour clock, but that it acts as a powerful antioxidant that destroys cancerous cells. It may also boost immunity and help in weight loss. The antioxidant properties are thought to explain why night shift workers have a higher rate of cancer. Night after night they suppress their melatonin by staying up and being exposed to light.

Melatonin has been studied as a sleep promoting agent in doses ranging from 0.3 mg to 80 mg and the results are always disappointing. There are a few hypotheses why that is the case.

First, melatonin is sold as a dietary supplement in this country and you can’t rely on the dose really being what the bottle says it is.

I have been trying to find out if there is brand of melatonin sold in the U.S. that is manufactured in Western Europe. Many European countries such as Germany regulate their herbal supplements as strictly as they do their pharmaceuticals. In fact, Germany considers melatonin a prescription medication.

Second, the timing of the dosing of melatonin when treating insomnia has not been firmly established.

For example, when we are using it to shift people’s circadian rhythm, we typically give it approximately six hours before desired bedtime. This can slowly phase advance them, i.e. get them to fall asleep earlier.

I experiment with the timing with patients. I start at 30 minutes before bedtime, in order to use it as a hypnotic, but if we don’t achieve the desired sleepiness, then I advise taking it 60 minutes before bed, then 90 minutes and so forth until we are actually using it as a chronobiotic, i.e. shifting the biological clock.

I always advise caution that they not go out and about or operate heavy machinery while we are first administering the melatonin.

Third, melatonin might work better on some people because they have a naturally low level whereas it has little effect on people who have normal levels. This hypothesis is extrapolated from literature that shows that melatonin is more effective when administered in the daytime when our natural levels are low. Also, melatonin seems to be more effective in elderly patients who often have low melatonin. Further supporting evidence might be the fact that most research shows little difference in response whether you give low dose or high dose.

Finally, perhaps oral administration is not the best method of delivery the drug. It is manufactured as sublingual  (under the tongue) and as transdermal (skin) patches, but whether these routes of delivery are more effective remains to be tested.

We should also keep in mind that certain medications such as beta blockers and anti-depressants can suppress melatonin levels.

Although the effectiveness of melatonin is questionable, it is generally considered safe in adults. Common side effects include morning grogginess, headache, vivid dreaming.

The information contained on this page does not and is not intended to convey medical advice. CNN is not responsible for any actions or inaction on your part based on the information that is presented here. Please consult a physician or medical professional for personal medical advice or treatment.

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soundoff (148 Responses)
  1. Scott

    When I hit 40 my sleep needs decreased and that is normal for everyone. Other areas to look at is your activities at night and what type of electronic/electrical devices may be keeping your up at night such as low-level light sources from clocks, cell phones, outside street lamps, etc. I wear earplugs and go to bed between 9-10pm to allow myself to fall into sleep deeply.

    I have had issues with insomnia and I have experiented with sleep aids through my doctor, OTC, and melantonin. Fortunately molantonin works well for me but I take it one hour before hitting the bed. I have to have at least 7 hours of sleep for this stuff so I won't be droggy in the morn. I also run and execise which helps my sleep also.

    If I have insomnia and I am up at 1am, I break my melantonin pill in half and take only 1.5mg so I can work the next day without falling asleep.

    April 20, 2011 at 09:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. S. Britchky

    I've taken melatonin twice, and both times it made me feel like I was on the verge of a psychotic episode. I don't know whether others have had similar experiences, but I won't try the medication again.

    April 20, 2011 at 09:43 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Stephanie

      My husband says that taking melatonin gives him very vivid and horrible dreams. So, yes, others have had the same experience. For me, it does wonders in helping me fall asleep.

      April 20, 2011 at 10:01 | Report abuse |
    • pumpkin

      My sibling took melatonin, exactly as prescribed by her psychiatrist, for sleeping problems. It threw off her other medications, and began to give her symptoms of psychosis. It took 3 months to get her back to 'normal'. It was a horrible, terrifying, dangerous experience. She nearly died walking aimlessly in traffic.

      May 19, 2011 at 18:12 | Report abuse |
    • Me too

      Mild psychotic episode is how I might describe what I experienced. It's been about 15 years, and I'm thinking of trying again as I have now experienced pregnancy, postpartum, and may be nearing perimenopause. I also take different medications than I did back then. But I'm scared to try melatonin again.

      December 26, 2012 at 00:35 | Report abuse |
  3. Sam

    Melatonin & Valerian root, and I'm out in 15 minutes or less!

    April 20, 2011 at 09:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Valerie

      Me too!!! : )

      April 20, 2011 at 10:19 | Report abuse |
  4. Lizzie

    I've used melatonin in the past. Recently I've had good success with Lemon Balm "Melissa" for falling asleep. This herb calms the stomach and promotes restful sleep.

    April 20, 2011 at 10:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. bill stepp

    My wife could only sleep using tylenol pm for the past 4 years, but we discovered a natural alternative that works great, with no addiction. somnapure.com Has a $3 two week trial. Miracle natural sleep aid.

    April 20, 2011 at 11:16 | Report abuse | Reply
    • rob

      hey Bill i just posted a message about valerian It's a good sleepping aid but if you have liver damage you should not take it Somnapure contains Valerian

      April 20, 2011 at 12:57 | Report abuse |
    • LizzieB

      Tylenol PM became such a popular "sleep aid" that the company decided to market it without the pain killer. It's called "Simply Sleep" and is just the antihistamine that makes you sleepy- so it's better for your stomach since you're not taking the unnecessary tylenol dose just to get to sleep.

      You can find it in any market in the same section where you find Tylenol PM.

      I suffer from PTSD and Simply Sleep is the only way I can get to sleep. I've tried Valerian, Melatonin, everything you can imagine, short of prescription sleeping pills (don't have the money and am concerned about long term use).

      It has literally saved (what's left of) my sanity.

      April 20, 2011 at 15:37 | Report abuse |
    • catmomof17

      robb...are you sure its valerian that has been linked to possible liver dmage and not kava? i've used valerian for over 20 years and never had a problem. high doses of kava have been linked to damage. since large amounts can produce somewhat of a "high," its more likely to be misused.

      May 8, 2011 at 09:59 | Report abuse |
  6. bill stepp

    http://www.peaklife.com/products/somnapure

    April 20, 2011 at 11:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Robin

    My doctor told me to take melatonin in addition to my ambien. I took both and they worked together but after a while I cut back on the ambien but continued with the melatonin. But i stopped when I read somewhere online that it lowered your reproductive rate/chance and for someone who is in their 20's that is the last thing I want to do...

    April 20, 2011 at 11:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Melanie Gray

    Melatonin only works at the smaller doses. I was surprised at the woman in the article talking about taking 2 or 3 pills. If you take more, it actually has the opposite effect and will definitely keep you awake. You are supposed to take one pill 30 minutes before bed, and if you wake up later on, take another one.

    April 20, 2011 at 11:36 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Steve

      Are you a doctor? Clearly not. You yalk as if you know what will work for everyone. Take one pill? What does that mean? You shouldn't take 2-3 pills? How many miligrams are we talking about. Taking a "pill" says nothing. Medications are usually measuered in specific units. One company may make a melatonin supplement where one pill is equal to 10 miligrams and another may sell it in 20 mg, Are you aware of that? How can you be absolutley sure that melatonin only works in smaller dosages? Everyone's chemical makeup is different. You can't possibly know the universal dosage for melatonin.

      June 21, 2011 at 16:06 | Report abuse |
  9. Shawna

    Valerian makes me have very vivid, horrible dreams. Melatonin alone or with Lemon Balm (MidNite), works great. Removing electronics (blue light) a couple of hours before bed, helps too. I have had insomnia since birth, and every little tip I can gather is a help to me. You just have to read, read, read, and try everything, keep what works. Some of the things you try take a little while to work–you have to keep doing them. The hardest one is to go to bed and get up at the same time, every single day.

    April 20, 2011 at 11:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. John R

    I'm probably going to be shot down for this, but as a rotating shift worker for 20 years, I knew 3 or 4 people who would drink a beer after arriving home (i.e. 7AM, but to them it was like 10PM). They swore by it. I don't like beer personally, but have tried melatonin quite a few times. It seemed to work for a while, but honestly, with the variations in sleep and ambient light, it could just have been random. Interestingly, I've talked to a couple of medical professionals who were taught (albeit right out of university) that melatonin doesn't work at all. I never quite agreed with that, and it was interesting to see this article answer some questions. By the way, the thing that really worked for me was: 1. Eat as healthy as possible. 2. Exercising in the afternoon, either after a dayshift or after sleeping in the morning from nightshift. 3. Blot out the windows 100%. Even a pin-hole of over-cast light will keep you awake. I also use some kind of white-noise...fan or air cleaner. 4. Be prepared to sleep up to 14 hours in a day while adjusting to a new shift. You waste some of your life, but you'll adjust better, and your body will thank you for it. I found I didn't need melatonin or any other aid if I did the above.

    April 20, 2011 at 12:17 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Ann

      Not going to shoot you down at all – you're right. It's questionable for most people to drink in the morning, because we have to get to work, but if you're at the end of your shift, it's no different than someone else having one at 5 pm.

      I work in a prison, and at one point years ago, we had a long lockdown that required staff to work 12-hour shifts, from noon to midnight or midnight to noon (Any BOP readers will know what I mean). That went on for 12 days, and it wreaked havoc on those of us who weren't used to shift work. Those of us on midnight to noon had a really hard time trying to go to sleep in the middle of the afternoon. My solution was to take 2 Benadryls and a beer as I was trying to wind down. Benadryl is the same medication as Sominex, an OTC sleep aid – and the beer just helped it along. It worked pretty well.

      April 20, 2011 at 15:40 | Report abuse |
  11. rob

    Valerian is also a natural effective sleep aid but it is not good for people with liver damage.
    make sure if you get a melatonin blend that it does not contain valerian if you have liver issues

    April 20, 2011 at 12:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Guest

    I've had chronic insomnia for years. Prescription sleep medications don't work on me. I took melatonin for a while. It helped me sleep better, but left me groggy in the morning. Higher doses made me have terrible dreams. I stopped taking it when it made me have hallucinate.

    April 20, 2011 at 13:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Eddie

    Whiskey is a wonderful sleep aid. Add that to your melatonin and "BAM!" You'll be drooling in no time. Good times LOL!!

    April 20, 2011 at 13:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. BOSS MAN

    SMOKE A J AND SLEEP GREAT

    April 20, 2011 at 13:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Larry Frieders

    Many good points in this article. The dosing is sometimes a concern – BECAUSE not every manufacturer actually puts enough melatonin in the capsule. I am particularly intrigued that this author mentions "patches". While they may be available on the market, they have drawback. The primary one is that each patch delivers a fixed amount. No room to adjust. A quality compounding pharmacist can make a preparation of pure melatonin in a special cream base (transdermal) that is easy to apply – and which accurately delivers the melatonin. Locate a compounding pharmacist and ask about it.

    April 20, 2011 at 13:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. sacchrainkiss

    I started taking melotonin in the evening and it really helps me, but does nothing for my husband. I add valerian on nights when I know I'm going to have trouble getting to sleep. I saw someone mention lemon-balm, I might have to try that as sometimes the valerian leaves me groggy the next morning.

    April 20, 2011 at 13:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Daniel

    I have taken 3mg of Melatonin for years. Problem is after a while your brain thinks it is making enough and stops it normal production. You need to take a holiday after a while or this will happen to you too.

    April 20, 2011 at 14:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. palintwit

    I put on a CD of Sarah Palin's greatest speeches. Then I puke myself to sleep.

    April 20, 2011 at 14:03 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Anthrogirl

      LMAO!!!

      April 20, 2011 at 14:50 | Report abuse |
    • DDM

      Bwahahahahaha – that's perfect!

      April 20, 2011 at 16:30 | Report abuse |
    • RHinWI

      So, what does she talk about in her speeches? Being able to shoot and being able to see Alaska?

      June 24, 2011 at 17:10 | Report abuse |
  19. Edward Carome

    It was long believed that melatonin was produced by the pineal only when the eyes are in darkness. It now is known that mainly blue light suppresses the gland's production of this hormone. The pineal gland is capable of producing melatonin for 10 to 11 hours every 24 hours, even for a blind person whose eyes are effectively always in darkness. Melatonin is a very active antoxidant and has has many health enhancing properties. Therefore, maximizing one's own melatonin by avoiding exposure to blue light for several hours in the evening before retiring, not only can improve sleep but also may positively affect health in other ways. For more information, go to pubmed.gov, the U.S. Government's health research literature web site and search, for example, under "melatonin, light, cancer" or "melatonin, obesity" , or whatever, to see how active research is on such topics.

    April 20, 2011 at 14:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. George B

    You also should mention the link between Melatonin and Orthostatic Hypotension. I've had problems drifting off to sleep my entire life and melatonin was amazingly effective. I'd take 3 mg. twenty minutes before bedtime and twenty minutes later I'd be yawning and droopy eyed. The moment my head hit the pillow I'd be out like a light and would wake up the next morning completely refreshed and energized.

    The only issue was after a few years of use I started having panic attacks. Often when standing motionless (waiting in line at the store or chatting with someone at work) I would get this horrible feeling like I was going to pass out and die, which of course made me quite uneasy and afraid. The panic attacks were unpredictable and debilitating, eventually treated with benzo's, which is no picnic either. After -years- of this issue, I read about a Penn study linking melatonin and postural hypotension (low blood pressure when standing up) As it turns out I -wasn't- having panic attacks; I really -was- about to pass out (which is pretty alarming!) If I was inactive when standing the problem presented, if I was moving around, walking or working my blood pressure would stay normal. I stopped taking melatonin and within a month the symptoms disappeared; I've been fine for the past decade. Oddly, I rarely have problems sleeping anymore; even without the melatonin I fall asleep quickly and sleep through the night just fine. Either my sleeping pattern changed with age or maybe I 'learned' a different sleeping pattern with ten years of melatonin use and no longer need melatonin supplements to reinforce that pattern...

    April 20, 2011 at 15:17 | Report abuse | Reply
    • George B

      I should also mention during the time I was taking melatonin I was traveling a lot on business – often one or two coast-to-coast trips every month, crossing multiple time zones each trip. Melatonin worked wonders for me, helping me get to sleep earlier when I headed East and needed to re-set the clock by three hours. It really was a very effective supplement for me, too bad about the serious side effects...

      April 20, 2011 at 15:22 | Report abuse |
  21. Steve

    I recently discovered a product called Dream Dust Sleep Aid. Works amazing and it is based on Melatonin plus other natural ingredients. Worked just fine for me, but I think it's just a fancy way of taking melatonin I guess. I paid something like 2.50 per bottle. Loved the packaging too.

    April 20, 2011 at 16:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. questionauthority

    Melatonin does nothing for me. Racks my wife out tho. Im jealous. Does the same for my 7 yo autistic son. If you have an autistic child try it. I also read that there is no toxic level and it has increadible anti inflamatory properties.

    April 20, 2011 at 16:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Patty Tucker

    Thank you Dr. Shives for this great article. My patients and clients have had varied success with melatonin as well. I'm often leery about using unregulated hormone products with so many variables involved. Phase shifting and jet lag seem to respond pretty well in my experience. The rest seems to be fairly random... Some do, some don't....
    http://www.sleepofchampions.com http://www.sleeprestlive.com

    April 20, 2011 at 17:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Just Mark

    A few other things to try along with whatever chemicals you may be taking:

    1) Before you get ready for bed, make a to do list for tomorrow. A lot of people have found that by writing down what they need to do, it helps them mentally let go of some of their worries. (Plus, being more organized when you wake up is never a bad thing, and if you have your to do list all ready to go, it can only help, right?)

    2) Meditate before you go to bed – or in bed. You just need to find an article on relaxation meditation.

    Insomnia is horrible, so I hope that this helps.

    April 20, 2011 at 19:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. daron d

    Melatonin also works with your pineal gland to actually regulate your hormones and other glands; the pineal gland is basically the conductor of the symphony that is your body with various glands and organs as the instruments; the melatonin is the wand directing.

    April 20, 2011 at 19:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Brian Dale

    Great article. Thanks.

    April 25, 2011 at 23:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. RaZZZ

    For a period I worked nights shifts from 10pm to 7am. When I drove home in the mornings, the route was exactly facing east so the sun was blazing right in my directions. Telling my body "Get up! It's morning" Then I'd arrive home to sleep and naturally, could not. I used Melatonin for only 2 weeks to reset my bodies sleep clock, also know as your circadian rhythm. It worked amazingly! You can find loads of sleeping tips in the FREE ebook Get To Sleep Now! at http://www.instantlyfallasleep.com

    April 26, 2011 at 03:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Mark

    I started a new job, and I was supposed to be M-F 9-5 as a senior network security engineer. They stated they needed someone to fill a back half of the week, night shift position, temporarily. They stated they rotate shifts, and I assumed after 1/2/3 months I would go to my normal 9-5 schedule. Well this didn't happen, and won't happen. I am working Wed-Sat nights, from 7pm to 7am. For weeks I have been getting barely 4-5 hours of sleep, and suffering greatly for it. I am cranky, moody, I am not eating right, I'm depressed where sometimes I wake up and just start crying for no reason, I can't study or workout or see my friends, it's like the world is caving in and until I find another job, I am pigeonholed and can't get out. Finding another job is terribly difficult as I am used to waking up at 5 or 6pm now, I miss the entire day, I talk with recruiters before 5pm and I sound as though I am still asleep... I have had multiple interviews at 1pm, 3pm, 4:30pm, and I have practically bombed them because my brain just does not work. So this job is not only terrible, but it is preventing me from finding a new one during the DAY, which is what I thought I would be working in the first place. No wonder they con people into working this shift, they do not rotate their shift, the shifts are permanent, but they do not tell you that until you quit your other job and start working for them. (Computer Sciences Corporation or CSC).

    I have been taking melotonin to help me sleep around 7 am when I normally get home, and it let's me sleep for a few hours, but I wake up and have bad headaches all day long, and feel groggy, almost drunk, hence terrible interviews.

    Some people don't get headaches at all, I do unfortunately. If you do get headaches, try a smaller dose, like 1mg, and if you can help it, do not EVER work night shift, even temporarily, it will kill you or increase your chances of death dramatically.

    April 27, 2011 at 05:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Dr sandra smith

    Get hold of Pran Yantra or tesla purple energy plates india. one has to simply keep these plates beneath the pillow n forget insomnia. It wl not even cost u a burgar.

    April 27, 2011 at 07:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. leslie

    My daughter, who has autism, takes melatonin to help her get to sleep at night since it is very difficult for her to wind down and get to sleep. For her it works really well about 30 minutes before bedtime. My husband, on the other hand, has tried melatonin and it did nothing. He also tried ambien which have him horrible nightmares. Now he is on trazodone, which has helped some but makes him really groggy in the morning and he has a hard time getting out of bed.

    April 27, 2011 at 12:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. chillin

    As Daniel says above, one needs to take breaks from Melatonin every now and then or the pineal gland will not produce near as much on its own. I take melatonin for a week and then take a week off with only relying on valerian during that week.

    May 4, 2011 at 16:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. WellnessDrive

    All Natural is the only way to go for help with sleep. I'm a light sleeper and when I need help I use 1 or maybe 2 tablets.

    Prime Dreamz which contains all-natural ingredients and it's designed to help people fall quickly into a deep sleep and awaken feeling refreshed, not groggy and tired. Works Great!

    http://www.WellnessDrive.com

    May 5, 2011 at 15:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. malmec

    My doctor recommended melatonin. Stuff made me dizzy and ill feeling. Sleep was the last thing I was able to do.

    May 18, 2011 at 01:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. djl

    A surprising simple solution is a single slice of whole grain toast and a small glass of milk 30-60 minutes before going to bed. Don't read in bed.

    I've started to turn off the computer at least an hour before bed. Turn off the TV also. Put some relaxing music on. Read a book for an hour. Halfway through the hour, have the toast and milk.

    When you go to bed, do your prep (brush, wash, etc) and then go to bed.

    This has been something I've started doing in the last 6 months. The reading relaxes you. The food, esp whole grain, provides some chem. repsonse that works like mel.

    Try it. If it doesn't work..well you haven't lost much.

    May 26, 2011 at 23:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Anil Minocha Shreveport

    Melatonin is a multidimentional chemical in the body. It's role ecompasses multiple body systems and is not just confined to sleep. As a gastroenterologist practicing in Shreveport, La, I would like to point out its substantial role in the digestive system as well. http://goo.gl/mKYOM

    June 11, 2011 at 13:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. Willow

    One issue people don't consider when considering sleep problems is low-carb diets. Carbs actually have something to do with increasing one's melatonin levels, so with the increase of popularity in low-carb diets, insomnia has also increased. Unfortunately, insomnia also tends to increase your body fat.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14568303

    June 11, 2011 at 20:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Lindalou

    I love it. I toss and turn if I don't take it. You have to vary the time you take it. Some people it works immediately on and other need up to an hour before bedtime to have it be effective. And sorry to say, its not for everyone, but worth a try.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Reds

    Melatonin for sleep should be a 0.1-0.2 mg dose sublingualy. Higher doses cause nightmares and/or keep you awake. It is difficult to find products in the low dosage range. If you take too high of a does you also supress whatever natural production there is. It is a great antioxidant, but you don't want to over do it. It should be used to shift circadian rhytm with care and strategy.

    June 21, 2011 at 11:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. shane

    I take melatonin most nights and it does wonders for me! Before taking it I suffered with insomnia and major sleep problems because of medical condition. Now unless I'm on call for work I take one 3mg pill and it helps me fall a sleep and stay a sleep. My dreams are vivid but never scary and crazy like they were when I took nasty nasty lunesta. That drug is horrible in my opinion. left me with a chemical taste in my mouth for hours in the morning and my dreams we so scary and of the wall.

    June 23, 2011 at 10:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Chris

    I love it, although it can be a bit 'funky' now and then because of the vivid dreams melatonin seems to cause.
    http://www.melatonineffects.net/melatonin-effects/melatonin-dreams/

    February 8, 2012 at 15:08 | Report abuse | Reply
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  43. Dan Goldstein

    I'd like to discuss with you Dr. Shriver. It is regarding pure melatonin cream used in nanograms. A chemist I brought this up to, had said it would be a good idea. Hence, got a prescription for my grandfather, and he compounded pure melatonin cream with no other ingredients. I'd like to discuss further via phone, as it is something I see you have not discussed in your discussion on your site about melatonin. In our society, it seems integrative medicine is not as used in combination wth more conventional. It is a shame.I'm not a doctor, just someone who has a passion for atypical combination of therapeutic agents that either can potentiate or synergize with other ones. Thanks. I hope you take me up on my offer to speak.
    I can be reached at the following email I mentioned above.
    Dan

    August 23, 2013 at 11:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Dan Goldstein

    As far as utilization of other herbs, for some, Valerian, although it could hit same gaba receptors as benzodiazepines in combination with other herbs like Skullcap and Lemon Balm, can be very calming for some. Add lavender cream on top of that, along with extracts of any of the above in putting into chamomile or Passionflower teas(Yes, Passionflower can exhibit minor MAOI activities, and unless you are taking a MAOI inhibitor, not to worry. However, depending on other issues such as physiological vascular ones, might have to speak with doctor who understands integrative non-conventional approaches. The other thing that can aid with sleep for those with high BP, agitation, aches and pains, is synergistic effects of low dose clonidine with Passionflower extract or tea form. This together helps the sympathetic along with the psychological aspects of certain individuals with specific stress dysfunctions, mood disorders, agitation,etc..

    August 23, 2013 at 12:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Jake Baumgartner

    I recommend finding ways to make your days longer. I work full time in a lumber yard and go to school last time and falling asleep is an issue I don't have trouble with. I leave my house at 7 in the morning and don't come home until 8 or 9, and what I do right after i get home and eat is sleep. Maybe having a harder work ethic will give you the sleep you want instead of blaming it on a lack of melatonin.

    February 26, 2015 at 23:03 | Report abuse | Reply
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  50. aprcoo

    I disagree, look at
    http://www.theblondeethos.com/blog/2015/6/zma-women-guide

    February 25, 2017 at 19:13 | Report abuse | Reply
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