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thoughts on melatonin?

Posted by on Sep. 2, 2013 at 9:18 PM
  • 15 Replies
Background: my 3 year old will NOT sleep. He has trouble settling down and will fight sleep for hours on end. Like screaming fighting. He wont let himself go down. So, we tried melatonin to help settle him. First 1mg and we've moved it to 4.5 Mg. This makes our fight last an hour or two instead of 4. No, really. But he only sleeps for three or four hours and is then up again and cant seem to go back down. I have been not been giving him melatonin lately though to try to get him on a schedule of sleep without it.

So. All that being said - has anyone used melatonin? Thoughts?
by on Sep. 2, 2013 at 9:18 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Mrs.TSmith
by on Sep. 2, 2013 at 10:07 PM
2 moms liked this

Have you considered just shutting him in his bedroom?  We have a Twilight Turtle for our son that provides stars for him and there isn't anything that can hurt him. So we turn on the turtle, shut the door and let him do what he needs to do to calm down.  Sometimes he plays, sometimes he cries for us under his door, sometimes he comes and asks for kisses so we give kisses and send him back.  All the while he does his things we do not acknowledge him except to kiss and hug him and send him back to bed.  


My husband's mother used to line her children up at night and give them Benadryl to make them sleep.  Now he is so immune to the effects of sleeping medication that his insomnia is out of control.  So personally I would just let him cry it out and not pay any attention to him rather than giving him even an herbal suppliment like Melatonin.  He is 3 years old, it's a ploy and he is winning, which is stressing you out.  I'd say that the first week will suck but once he see's that your not paying any attention to the behavior he will chill out. 

gummibr
by on Sep. 2, 2013 at 10:19 PM

As a mother of a child with sleep issues, I understand what you are going through.  I don't think its a ploy on his part or a test of wills.  Some kids just can't sleep no matter what type of routines you set.  Also, if you've never experienced a child that won't sleep for 3-4 hours after the routine starts, I don't think other parents can fully understand.  Melatonin was recomended by our pediatrician and luckily has worked for us.  Maybe ask you pediatrician for a stronger med?  I don't love medicating him, but he is much happier when he gets a good nights sleep vs only a few hours.

hwifeandmom
by on Sep. 2, 2013 at 10:40 PM

I totally agree!  Thankfully my daughter only has problems falling asleep, not staying asleep (even as a baby this was true).  I wonder if time-released melatonin would help your little guy stay asleep?

Quoting gummibr:

As a mother of a child with sleep issues, I understand what you are going through.  I don't think its a ploy on his part or a test of wills.  Some kids just can't sleep no matter what type of routines you set.  Also, if you've never experienced a child that won't sleep for 3-4 hours after the routine starts, I don't think other parents can fully understand.  Melatonin was recomended by our pediatrician and luckily has worked for us.  Maybe ask you pediatrician for a stronger med?  I don't love medicating him, but he is much happier when he gets a good nights sleep vs only a few hours.



britmichele
by on Sep. 2, 2013 at 10:42 PM
Tart cherry juice is safer for kids with same effect as melatonin
mypbandj
by on Sep. 2, 2013 at 10:59 PM
I think you're using too much to be honest. I give my 3 yr old 1/2 of a 1 mg tablet and it helps him settle down. But in order to work, it MUST be dark. If we leave lights on, it doesn't work. Also, it's only meant to help them fall asleep, not stay asleep.
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collinsmommy0
by Silver Member on Sep. 2, 2013 at 11:42 PM
Have you gotten his iron levels checked? My son was waking up every 2 hours for a long time - now I give him flintstones + iron vitamins & he sleeps much better.

I would look into other things before melatonin - it's very controversial to use, especially with children. But if its helping then I wouldn't stop it fully - maybe reduce it or something.

Is he tired? Or overtired? Is he in active classes (preschool, gymnastics, etc) that tire him out?
.Angelica.
by on Sep. 2, 2013 at 11:50 PM

i don't have any opinions on it since I've never had the need for it.

PinkButterfly66
by on Sep. 3, 2013 at 12:12 AM

I would suggest giving him a boron supplement daily.  Boron helps pull fluoride from the pineal gland so that it can work properly and produce melatonin properly.   Give him melatonin  at dinner time.  It takes a few hours to "kick in".  Then after dinner, begin bedtime routine... a nice warm relaxing bath, then a bedtime snack, cuddles and story and then bed.

There is some correlation between vitamin d deficiency and sleep problems. You might want to also give him a vitamin D3 supplement with his melatonin.   This one is a good brand,  it doesn't have any artifical colors or flavors.   Two drops is 800iu.  The Vitamin D Council recommends 35iu/pound of weight for children under the age of 5 -- so for a 30 pound 3 year old that would be 3 drops.   

sophiesmom07
by on Sep. 3, 2013 at 9:35 AM

My friend uses it on her daughter because she has a sleeping disorder. Her pedi recommended it and it has been helping a lot.  I would use it if I needed it. 

kajira
by on Sep. 3, 2013 at 10:59 AM

I'm leery of melatonin. I was given it as a kid, and it made my sleep issues worse, and caused nightmares. I've also heard/known of it increasing aggressive and violent behaviors.

I would talk to your pediatrician. I would rule out food allergies, and other vitamin issues. A lot of sleep issues are caused by GI track problems, or an out of whack/balance system. Fixing the system, often fixes the sleep issues.

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