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Is Melatonin Safe and Effective for Children?

Melatonin is an endogenous hormone that is produced in the pineal gland. It regulates the sleep rhythm and helps to fall asleep and stay asleep. It is also available as a dietary supplement.

Is it safe for children?

According to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), there is currently insufficient data to assess the safety of melatonin supplements for children under the age of three. The same safety standards apply to older children as to adults.

When should melatonin be used?

Melatonin should only be used as directed by a doctor or experienced healthcare professional. It's usually only prescribed for short periods of time to treat jet lag or certain sleep disorders.

What are the possible side effects?

  • Headache
  • dizziness
  • stomach pain
  • nausea
  • Fatigue or sleepiness the next day

What are the benefits in children?

Melatonin can be used to treat sleep disorders in children due to jet lag, parental shift work, or other factors.


As with any medication, parents should always check with a doctor first before using melatonin in their children. In addition, only products manufactured in accordance with European Union regulations should be used.

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