As some of you will know, our daughter was diagnosed with Benign Rolandic Epilepsy last year, and since then we’ve been on the roller coaster of finding the right dose of medicine, of trying to find ways to help her get the sleep she needs, and of dealing with seizures that unfortunately, have progressed to full-on tonic clonic (otherwise known as grand mal) seizures.
You may recall I wrote a post sometime last year about the possible link between seizures, melatonin and lack of sleep. What does seem clear that there is some kind of relationship between melatonin and seizures. Since I’ve spent a great deal of time scouring the internet for information related to the safety of melatonin in kids, I thought this would be helpful information to share here. Of special interest to me (for obvious reasons) is the effect of melatonin on kids with Epilepsy. From spending some time reading some pretty credible sources, it appears that smaller, standard doses of melatonin may increase the likelihood of seizures, whereas mega-doses of the hormone seem to reduce the frequency of seizures.

I hope I don’t actually have to say this,  but please do not give your child mega-doses of melatonin except as prescribed by a physician!
Much of the research that has been done to date on melatonin use in children has been in populations with conditions such as ADHD, Autism, visual impairments, Cerebral Palsy, and developmental disabilities. Before starting your child on melatonin, or stopping melatonin, please first consult your child’s physician. From the research I’ve seen on melatonin use in kids,  I have no doubt that melatonin works to help kids fall asleep. The problem is that melatonin is not, as some would have you believe, simply just another natural supplement.
A number of major news outlets have published articles over the past year or so discussing the use of melatonin in kids.

In many cases where a child has sleep issues related to one of these conditions, a doctor will prescribe melatonin. Melatonin is a hormone, and the long-term effects on children have not been studied sufficiently.
The research seems to show positive outcomes in these kids, perhaps because meds used to treat these conditions may reduce natural melatonin levels.

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