Melatonin is a vital hormone necessary to sustain life.
Cutting your sleep short due to an early flight or studying for exams and you will most certainly feel it the next day. Sleep plays a vital role in our daily life, mess with it and you know. From tissue repair to restoring energy, sleep allows us to function each day, both inside and out. But what about those times when you have trouble getting to sleep? One night might be okay, however, what about several? What can a person do to remedy their situation that is not only safe but effective?
Most healthy adults need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night. Children and teenagers need even more. To help you determine if you are getting enough sleep, answer the following questions:
- Do you have difficulty getting out of bed in the morning?
- Are you feeling sluggish in the afternoon?
- Do you need to nap to get through the day?
- Have you been falling asleep watching television in the evening?
- Are you relying on the snooze button too much?
- Are asleep within 5 minutes of going to bed.
There are serious consequences to our health if we are not getting sufficient sleep that include premature skin aging, a weakened immune system, and impaired motor skills. To avoid this it’s imperative that we are aware of how we feel each and every day. If we know that we are suffering from sleep deprivation, we can then be proactive and do something to remedy the situation.
While there are many prescription sleep-aids on the market today, all have the potential for serious side effects. Familiar brand names include Lunesta, Ambien, and Sonata. A good night’s sleep comes with the risk of developing a side effect like changes in appetite, difficulty keeping balance, constipation and even compulsive behaviors such as gambling and eating. Even scarier is the fact that some users have experienced sleepwalking, sleep eating and sleep driving. The good news is that there are natural and effective options available for those who suffer from lack of effective sleep.
Melantonin is a hormone created by our pineal gland in our brain that regulates our sleep and wake cycles. The amount produced is influenced by our internal clock and how much light we are exposed to throughout the day. As the evening progresses, our melatonin levels increase, remaining elevated all through the night. It is this period of time that our body needs to repair and recharge itself for the following day. If we are unable to fall asleep, or stay asleep, this essential work is compromised, leaving us vulnerable to health problems. So, what are we to do if we are having sleep difficulties without resorting to prescription medications and the potential for more harmful side effects by using them?
The U.S. Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 allows melantonin to be sold as a supplement. By naturally being found in some foods such as pineapples, rice, and tomatoes, melatonin is the only hormone that is available over the counter. This wonderful supplement, when taken as directed, helps a person to fall asleep naturally when occasional sleeplessness occurs.
There are times in our life when we need a little help getting the sleep that we need. It’s normal, especially as we age and our supply of melatonin decreases. Quality sleep is essential to how well we thrive.
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