[deleted account] ( 3 moms have responded )

My 2.5 year old and 3.5 year old have such a problem with winding down at night, this has been going on for about a year and a half and I've tried everything from bath, soft music, warm milk, no nap, and no luck yet, a few people told me that they give their child melatonin about 30 mon before bedtime... Anybody have any experiences? Is it safe? This is my last resort! Thanks :)


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User - posted on 09/14/2013




Truthfully, I am not really for sleep medication for adults, let alone children. Its a thing that it isnt natural,a nd there are so many different things you can do before you try medication (with a doctors oversite and recommendation).
No sugary foods/drinks after 5 or so
Minimal light in their bedrooms at night
Turning off the lights about an hour before bedtime, just enough to see
Turning off the tv, radio, electronics hours before bedtime
Giving them a bath at night time before bed
Using a soothing smelling lotion as in Lavender
reading a book to them-this really gets mine-he gets up, puts himself to bed lol age 2 1/2, we are blessed for that
Making sure that you and anyone else in the household are quiet and use a softer voice before bedtime
No play time at least an hour before bedtime
Also like right after dinner time, play with them, to help expel the excess energy before you start the above

I dont like using medication unless I have to, and especially for children, you dont want them to look for medication at an early age to fall asleep. give these things a try, and try them not just for a few days but a couple weeks, you will see a difference as long as you are consistent

Josie - posted on 09/14/2013




Kailie- we just had an extremely negative reaction to time released melatonin for my 2.5 year old. He had 1mg thirty minutes before bed and I will never do that again.
We think our sweet mild mannered child began to have a terrible nighmare. He was thrashing around so upset and this lasted for quite a while. He finally fell asleep and thank goodness he is back to his sweet self this morning.

I must say that I have friends who have had success with it and I can't seem to find any info online with people who have experienced something similar to us. This however was our experience.

[deleted account]

Pediatricians are now advising against using melatonin on children, as it can have negative effects on the body's natural ability to produce it in the long term. Basically, it is believed among many professionals that giving the synthetic melatonin to children negates the purpose for their body to produce natural melatonin, thus, they don't produce it and come to rely on the synthetic. Synthetic melatonin should NOT be used continuously, and has not been approved by the FDA.

I wouldn't give it to my child.

Your kids may just need extra time to wind down at night--some kids take longer. Here are some less common but very effective ways to help restless children settle.

1. Limit screen time before bedtime--screens should all be turned off at least 2 hours before bedtime.
2. Make sure they get LOTS of physical activity early in the day. Encourage them to run, jump, and play. Build obstacle courses, have them help in the garden, get them outside at least once a day--no matter the weather (unless of course it's something like severe storms or tornadoes).
3. Make sure they are getting enough sleep or quiet time during the day. Lack of sleep is the leading cause of restlessness when trying to fall asleep. Toddlers need between 12 and 14 hours of sleep each day, so make sure they are in an environment that promotes sleep for at least 14 hours each day (15 for the younger one). It should be broken up into about 11 to 12 hours at night, and 2 to 4 hours of quiet time during the day. They don't have to be asleep the whole time, just in a calm, dark, quiet environment.
4. If you give them sugary drinks like fruit juice or sport drinks, stop giving them those and give them water instead.
5. Make sure they are getting enough protein and not too much carbohydrates during the day.
6. Put them down for bed and for naps at the same time every day--even if they are not tired at all, put them in their sleep space and dim the lights. Their natural clocks will eventually adjust, but it may take a few months to a year.

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