Autistic Kids With Insomnia? Melatonin May Help!
Autistic Kids and Insomnia: What Helps?
Autistic kids most often suffer from insomnia. In fact, almost 89% do, says Dr. Beth Goodlin-Jones, a researcher with the Medical Investigation of Neurodevelopmental Disorders ( M.I.N.D.) Institute at the University of California Davis Health System in Sacramento.
Now for the good news! Dr. Goodlin-Jones says that over-the-counter melatonin* (N-acetyl-5-methoxytryptamine) helps these children fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.
* Melatonin is a dietary supplement said to promote healthy sleep patterns.
An Important Study on Relieving Insomnia in Autistic Children
The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, states that children who took melatonin, lengthened mean sleep duration by 21 minutes, and the time it takes to fall asleep by a mean 28 minutes, versus those who received a placebo. The participants of the study received 3 mg. of melatonin for two weeks.
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CAUTION: Always speak with your pediatrician before beginning any treatment, including melatonin.
There has been more than one study when it comes to autistic children, insomnia and melatonin. Check out the one done by Beth Malow, MD, director of the Sleep Disorders Center at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn. Her results were also positive.
Melatonin is also a powerful antioxidant, besides being a sleep aid for all people of all ages.
CAUTION: The information included herein is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan.