Melatonin and Sleep – Review

VAN MAANEN, A., MEIJER, A. M., SMITS, M. G. and OORT, F. J. (2011), Melatonin and sleep effects on health, behavior problems and parenting stress. Sleep and Biological Rhythms, 9: 165–171. doi: 10.1111/j.1479-8425.2011.00502.x

A very short review of this article, because it does not really suit the subject of my project, which is about average adolescents and not focused on medical treatment.

This article is about children who receive melatonin treatment, and the effects thereof. The participants of the study were children with severe sleeping disorders. In short, the conclusions of the study are that melatonin treatment has an immediate, positive effect on health, as long as the treatment causes actual longer sleep time. Also behavioral problems decrease. When the treatment is stopped, the problems come back.

Interestingly, I read in another article [link coming soon] that amongst other causes, melatonin production in adolescents is disrupted or changed, hence the late bed times and sleep deprivation. If melatonin is such an important aspect of sleep, health and behavior, would you not want to fix it if you could?

For more literature on sleep, see this post.