I've written about melatonin for insomnia a number of times - and now I've just come across another study that looked at the effectiveness of melatonin supplements in those over the age of 55.
The study found that those taking over-the-counter melatonin supplements fell asleep just over 6.5 minutes faster and slept for almost 20 minutes longer compared to those not taking the sleep aid.
These numbers may not sound particularly impressive, but they're comparable to the numbers we see when looking at the effectiveness of sleeping pills such as benzodiazepines.
The results have not yet been peer-reviewed, so they should only be considered preliminary for the time being. Furthermore, the individual doses were all over the place, ranging from 0.1mg to 10mg - although the study's author claimed that they did not see a difference in outcome according to dose (perhaps the placebo effect is at work here).
All this being said, it could be worth considering melatonin as a sleep aid - particularly if you're over the age of 55. Remember, just because something is marketed as 'natural', it doesn't necessarily come without side-effects so you should still speak with your doctor before starting a melatonin regimen.
If you are looking for a natural insomnia remedy that includes melatonin, I recommend Serenite-Plus.
Source: MedPage Today
Last updated: November 15, 2013