Posted by: flower | 2009/07/09

melatonin 3mg

i was told by a medical doctor to use melatonin for my baby to sleep at night. My son is 9 and a half months old and has disturbed sleep for various reasons, teething, very active during sleep, cannot go from sleep to deep sleep. This causes my son to be miserable the next day and cries a lot.

I was told to use half of a 3mg tablet but i dont know much about this drug and was wondering if that is not a bit much for such a small baby, should i not try maybe a quarter first.

Then is this a safe drug to use? Is it herbal?

Any side effects i should be concerned about?

what can you tell me about this drug.

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Our expert says:
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Melatonin has been withdrawn in the UK and the US because it has been inadequately studied. There are concerns about the dosage, timing, and possible side-effects. There is some evidence that (a) only people who have been shown to have low melatonin levels should actually be put onto it, (b) the appropriate dosage has not been determined, and (c) long-term safety has not been established. In mant cases, 0.3mg (one tenth of this dose) is considered to be appropriate FOR AN ADULT.

In this country the regulations controlling the sale of medication have been bypassed by registering it as a "food additive". However, you are correct - it is and should be used as a drug, with adequate safety and effectivity studies. Which havent been done.

I would certainly NOT consider it for a child of this age. Melatonin is produced cyclically in the normal person - bright light exposure suppresses the production, dimming of the light later in the day allows it to peak, and then it appears to put one to sleep 5 or 6 hours later. So all that is needed is to take your baby for a walk in the morning in his pram, and maintain a healthy evening routine. That will ensure that melatonin is not an issue in his case.

I would MOST CERTAINLY NOT consider melatonin, in any dose, in a child of this age.

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