Commonly known as a sleep enhancer for help with insomnia, you may not realize that melatonin is also very helpful for use with children who are dealing with ADHD. When taken for ADHD, it can help to cut back a lot of the side effects that this disorder brings about.
Kids that are suffering with ADHD will usually find it hart to fall asleep at night. A good number of the medications that will be prescribed to help with ADHD can also contribute to insomnia or make it worse. Children dealing with ADHD will sometimes have insomnia that is caused by a decrease in the levels of melatonin that are secreted from the pineal gland inside the brain.
Your pineal gland helps with the regulation of your sleep cycles, and the melatonin will then be secreted as it gets dark. Melatonin levels are reduced during the daylight hours. However, when disorders such as ADHD are present, along with autism and epilepsy, the levels of melatonin can drop down way below normal. This can then lead to a major delay in sleep onset and the child could end up staying awake for the whole evening and then feel sleepy during the daytime.
When this happens, synthetic melatonin can be used to bring on sleep. This is melatonin produced in a lab and it can be very effective if you are able to take it in the right dose. You can usually find this supplement at most whole food stores or drugstores today.
Melatonin And Children
Doctors have done years and years of research to make sure that melatonin is safe for use with children who have ADHD to improve their sleep. Kids should only be given about 0.3mg each day or less when they have sleep related issues. This is something that should be administered for a few hours prior to bed time and it can help to induce good, healthy sleep. The child should wake up feeling refreshed without any signs of drowsiness. Supplements of melatonin are used to regulate sleep for a stipulated time period.
Some of the other benefits of using melatonin for ADHD kids will be the restoration of the sleep cycle and helping them to remain alert and active during the daytime. Kids suffering from eating disorders, epilepsy, autism and depression have all been known to benefit greatly from this supplement. There can also be notable modifications in behavior in both children and teenagers.
Side Effects Of Melatonin Overdose
Anything that is above the recommended dosage can lead to undesirable side effects in the body. With melatonin, there can be the feeling of grogginess and it can start to impact concentration or the child may end up seeming a bit disoriented.
To work on avoiding reactions, you need to be able to consult a health care professional prior to administering the supplement.
Some side effects can be noticed with overuse including:
Loss of appetite
Abdominal pain or discomfort
Changes in mood
Headaches, ranging from moderate to severe
Dizziness or giddiness
Aggressive or irritable behavior
Irritable bowels and/or diarrhea
Delayed puberty, usually seen in children that are prepubescent
Episodes of seizures, often becoming more frequent over time
Fatigue, especially during the daytime hours
Generalized weakness in the limbs
This is a great supplement that can be very effective for the treatment of ADHD related sleep disorders, however you need to use it carefully. This is also a medication that can help certain adults with the treatment of sleep issues. While this is a supplement that is known to be fairly safe in nature, you should never think about giving it to your child without consulting their pediatrician first. No matter what, you will always find that there is a lot to be said about natural supplementation and making sure that your child is able to get the best sleep at night to take on the next day.