Is It Safe to Give My Baby Melatonin to Help Her Sleep?
The importance of a good night’s sleep for both children and adults cannot be denied. A good bedtime routine plays a crucial role in ensuring that a child doesnt face any sleep issues. But its easier said than done. A good night’s rest is of fundamental importance for ensuring babies’ proper health as their brain develops the most during this time. One of the many problems that new parents face is putting their child to a sound sleep. So they resort to supplements like melatonin for kids.
As tasty melatonin gummies for kids are available easily online, many parents continue giving them to their children and often end up ignoring the significance of establishing healthy sleeping patterns.
Melatonin and Its Effect on Sleep
Caption: A boy sleeping, Credits: Pixabay
Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone in the human body. It is released by the brain to regulate the body’s circadian rhythm. Circadian rhythm refers to the sleep-wake cycle of the body. Sometimes, a child’s brain does not create enough melatonin. In such a case, it becomes difficult for them to sleep. Hence, a melatonin supplement is used by people to facilitate melatonin secretion and fall asleep.
Melatonin for toddlers and kids is usually found as an over-the-counter sleep-inducing product. It can be seen in many pharmacies and health food stores. You can find varying melatonin dosage for 2 year old or slightly elder children on these health supplements, often formulated as gummies, liquids, and chewable tablets.
Many studies are underway to determine the exact effect of melatonin on children’s sleep. Some of them have concluded that it can minimize the time a child takes to sleep. At the same time, others have shown no concrete evidence in this regard. For children with ADHD (Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder) and insomnia, the supplement can help them rest. But still, the connection has not been proved very well.
Melatonin Dosage for Kids
Caption: Child being administered medicine, Credit: Pixabay
Parents should note that kids’ melatonin supplements are not approved by the Food and Drug Administration(FDA). So no clarity about its dosage can be known. Because of this, there is no melatonin dose chart child available anywhere.
In such a case, parents can consult their child’s doctor or pediatrician regarding the correct dosage that their child should receive. However, the first route, in this case, should be establishing proper time-regulated sleep and waking patterns.
Although supplements like melatonin should be the last resort, if you do choose to plan to administer it to your kid, start with a very low dosage, preferably, 0.5 mg-1 mg. It should be taken by the child 1.5 to half an hour before bedtime. If your child has ADHD, then the dosage should be around 3-6 mg.
Do not adjust the dosage without consulting a healthcare professional. It can have adverse consequences for your child’s health.
How Can You Make Your Child Fall Asleep Naturally?
Caption: Mother and her child in bed, Credit: Pixabay
As mentioned before, administering melatonin should be the last choice. If you have a healthy baby or kid, emphasis should be given to setting up proper sleeping patterns and schedules. Some ways by which you can achieve that are:
Pre bedtime activity routine, like bathing children, singing lullaby, and bedtime stories.
Not using the bed for any other activity apart from sleeping.
Keeping the bedroom well-ventilated and adjusting its temperature.
Turning off all kinds of electronic devices atleast an hour before bedtime.
Thus, we see that although melatonin can help a child sleep to some extent, it is not something that should become a part of a child’s lifestyle. When they are growing and developing, it becomes necessary for you not to make your children dependent on such pills and supplements. If your child has ADHD or a severe insomnia case, it’s best to seek a doctor’s advise.