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Melatonin is a hormone naturally produced in the human body that helps regulate the sleep-wake cycle. The pineal gland in the brain releases melatonin beginning at sunset, elevating blood levels of the hormone and encouraging drowsiness. Melatonin levels are high throughout the night, and drop in the morning staying low throughout the day.
Because it plays an important role in regulating the body clock, taking a melatonin supplement may be helpful in alleviating jet lag or getting used to working an unusual shift. It is unknown if melatonin supplements can improve the quality of sleep or alertness during the day. Extensive studies have not been conducted on the use of melatonin supplements, but it is generally safe for very short-term use for jet lag and similar conditions.
Recent studies have suggested that melatonin also has antioxidant properties, but more research is needed to understand the health benefits of these findings.
Use as directed. Users often have to experiment with the dose of melatonin they use by increasing or decreasing the amount until they find which dose works best.
Consult your physician before using melatonin if you're currently taking any medications or have a health condition. Consult your physician before using melatonin if you're currently taking any medications or have a health condition. No major side effects have been reported. Melatonin should not be used by children or pregnant/nursing women.