The Sleeping Hormone
The sleeping hormone also known as melatonin is present in the body and plays a role in sleep. The production of melatonin and the release in the brain is connected to the time of the day; it increases in dark and decreases in light. The production of melatonin decreases with age. Melatonin is also a supplement available as an oral tablet. Most of these melatonin supplements are produced in a lab. People usually use melatonin for insomnia or jet lag also known as sleep disorders. Unlike other sleep medications, melatonin is a medication that you are unlikely to become dependent on even if you use it repeatedly. It is also called the Vampire hormone because it is produced in the dark and inhibited by the light. The levels of melatonin produced increase at night and falls in the morning. Exposure of light before bed pushes the biological clock towards the wrong direction. An ideal time to take melatonin should be thirty minutes before bed.
Melatonin drug only works for specific conditions like circadian rhythm sleep disorders that happen when a person is blind, delayed sleep-wake phase sleep disorder also known as delayed sleep phase, which occurs when you go to sleep late and wake up late. Melatonin drug, in this case, helps to reduce the length of time to fall asleep. Consult your doctor in case you decide to give melatonin medicine to your child. Melatonin medicine also provides relief from inability to fall asleep and stay asleep also known as insomnia. Research also shows that this medication helps to improve jet lag symptoms.
Melatonin is also useful for some people who want to sleep during the day as their work requires them to awake at night. The sleep disorder due to this kind of work schedule is also commonly known as shift work disorder. Before you take any melatonin medicine get yourself checked first and only take if the doctor prescribes it. Doses of melatonin according to a recent study suggests that it can also help with cancer, ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), high blood pressure at night, Alzheimer’s disease and also helps children with autism spectrum disorders.
To help increase the melatonin you can try some of these tips:
- Try sleeping in the dark as your natural circadian rhythm responds to the light. It is important to keep your bedroom in complete darkness. You can also try covering up your alarm clock if it has light or try wearing eye masks.
- Time and again the doctor’s advice us to eat the right food. It comes handy as the right food before bedtime has the possibility to give your body a boost of melatonin. Bananas, oats, rice, sweet corn, pineapples, barley, and tomatoes are a few examples that have shown to increase melatonin naturally.
- Don’t sit in your bedroom or at your work desk all day. Try to get exposure to bright natural light as it helps your pineal gland to differentiate between day and night.
- Avoid using your phones or laptop in bed as these devices emit a blue light that tricks your brain into thinking its daytime.
- Try using a sleep tracker as it will monitor your sleep and will help you to identify the periods of restlessness. It helps you to adjust your sleep patterns accordingly that improves the production of melatonin.
- Try to meditate before bedtime, as meditation helps the body to produce melatonin, and helps you to stay relaxed and stress free.