The Truth About Melatonin Addiction

Melatonin is a drug that can help you drift off to a fantasy world. If so, then you may be curious as to how and why it affects you. You may have read about grogginess and bad dreams as side effects - but can you become physically addicted to it? Marri Horvat MD, sleep specialist and psychiatrist says that Melatonin (a hormone made naturally by the brain when it detects darkness) is one of these side effects. "When someone takes melatonin, they are either trying to increase the amount of this hormone overall or increase the amount they have in their body at a certain time to help them fall asleep." While there are some possible setbacks to taking melatonin (depending on how your body reacts), it isn't addictive. It turns out that even though you may depend on melatonin for sleep, your body won't become addicted to it. Dr. Horvat explained that as we age there is a decrease in the production of melatonin. Supplementation may be beneficial. Read on to find out what we know about melatonin and why it's not addictive.

Is Melatonin Addictive?

No, melatonin is not addictive, but there are questions surrounding if it can end up harming you if you use it too long.

Many people are curious if melatonin can be used to increase your tolerance, thereby causing you to require more. These are all symptoms of addiction, but they haven't been shown to be associated with melatonin supplements.

"Melatonin is not known to be an addictive supplement," answers Dr. Horvat. "Usually, people can discontinue the medication if they feel they have side effects." Dr. Horvat says that you don't need to stop taking it. However, your sleep will almost always return to normal once you stop taking the medication.

Does your body have to rely on melatonin for its existence? If you can't become addicted to melatonin, can your body become dependent? Chemical dependence is when your body gets used to one substance. There are theories that excessive melatonin intake could lead to a decrease in natural melatonin levels. This is something you might have discovered if your research has focused on the effects of melatonin.

There is no evidence to support this claim. Dr. Horvat says that your body already depends on melatonin. It needs this hormone in order to make you sleep, so that's why we create it. No evidence has been provided to support the idea that taking melatonin could cause a decrease in our bodies' ability to make melatonin. "It isn't possible for our bodies to become dependent on external supplements.

In other words, you shouldn't be concerned about becoming addicted or dependent on melatonin tablets.

How safe is it to consume melatonin?

Addictive or not, melatonin should still be taken with care. You may need to adjust the amount of melatonin that you take depending on whether or not you are suffering from sleep disorders. You should note the various dosages of this supplement. Dr. Horvat says that a dose of 1 to 3mg is recommended for people who need to fall asleep. This should be taken between one and two hours prior to your preferred sleep time. People with REM Sleep Behavior Disorder, or other serious conditions such as REM insomnia disorder should not take higher doses than 10-15 mg.

Is it important to take melatonin each day or not? Experts say there's no harm in using the supplement over a longer period of time, especially if you're getting better sleep. Dr. Horvat merely points out the importance of keeping your doctor informed.

Dr. Horvat says that there isn't much information on the long-term safety and effectiveness of melatonin. It may be worth speaking to your doctor if you take this for sleep aids more than once a month.

You need to be aware of the side effects of melatonin

Dr. Horvat says that some people react more to melatonin than others, and it's difficult to predict which patients will be affected. A side effect of melatonin that causes headaches is interesting. Melatonin can be used to prevent headaches in certain people.

Dr. Horvat states that most people experience no side effects. However, some individuals may notice an increase in sleepiness, dizziness, or headaches. This supplement is not FDA-regulated so it is important that you carefully read the label and any ingredients. The advertised melatonin levels are 80%-400% lower than the FDA-regulated amount. There are other safety precautions to consider when you're considering using melatonin with your child.

Even if it's not addictive, it's still important to know that melatonin supplements can affect everyone a little bit differently. After taking the prescribed dose, be sure to monitor for side effects. You should consult your healthcare provider if you feel the effects are getting worse.