If your child is having trouble sleeping, it might be tempting to reach for “natural” melatonin supplements at the drug store.
But parents may want to think twice before giving melatonin to young children and seek a physician’s opinion first, according to a new health advisory from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM).
Melatonin, a hormone that’s produced naturally in the brain and helps regulate sleep, is the second-most popular supplement that parents give their children after multivitamins.
AASM officials say this poses potential harm given that melatonin is sold in the United States as a dietary supplement and therefore is not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration.
The past decade has seen a sharp increase in melatonin-related calls to poison control centers in the United States, increasing 530 percent from 2012 to 2021, according to the