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Melatonin and diabetes?

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by WendyTT, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. WendyTT

    WendyTT Approved members

    Jan 7, 2008
    Hi--I haven't been on here lately but realize how much I miss the info! Does anyone know if giving a child with diabetes Melatonin for sleep issues is safe? Lindsay has the hardest time falling asleep at night--once she is asleep she sleeps great but sometimes it takes her 2-3 hours to fall asleep. She has become extremely grumpy and irritable so I am determined to fix this and give her something to get her body back into a rythm of falling asleep at a decent time. I searched the internet and read somewhere that there is a warning on some bottles of Melatonin that it shouldn't be given to anyone with an autoimmune disease, but I don't know why. I do plan on asking our doc before I try it but just wondered if anyone had anymore insight into it. And what has anyone else done to help their child fall asleep at night? By the way she is 11, almost 12 years old.
  2. emm142

    emm142 Approved members

    Sep 7, 2008
    I have no advice on melatonin, it is not something that I have ever used. Sleep issues suck! Does she know what is stopping her from getting to sleep? If she is feeling scared or having worries, those sort of things could potentially be talked out.

    Personally, I have issues with a racing mind when I'm trying to sleep if I don't have a decent amount of downtime before bed. For example if I try to do university work soon before going to bed, it's like my mind just doesn't switch off right and it races instead of letting me sleep. Some people also have issues with using electronic equipment (bright screens, etc) right before bed. I find sometimes that just reading for a while before sleeping can help.

    I also listen to audiobooks. I started this when I was having sleep issues at around age 9, and at 19 I still can't sleep at all without an audiobook. In a way I guess it's not good to be dependent on that at my age :eek: but on the other hand, if it helps me sleep it helps me sleep, KWIM?

    Hopefully someone will chime in about the melatonin. Has she seen a doctor about this?
  3. Marie4Julia

    Marie4Julia Approved members

    Dec 11, 2008
    I am not aware of any problems with Melatonin and D. Last week at my non-D son's doctor appointment, he suggested that we use melatonin if my son has trouble falling asleep. He said it is gentle and non habit forming. But he doesn't have d. It may be worth giving the endo a call.

    I would also suggest reading before bed, but I'm sure if you are looking into melatonin, you've already given that a try.
  4. Helenmomofsporty13yearold

    Helenmomofsporty13yearold Approved members

    Oct 5, 2008
    If you can get her to drink one of the "Sleepy Time", "Bed Time" herbal teas, I think they work much more quickly than melatonine without the side effects. Eating some carbs before bed may help. I cannot fall asleep if I have not eaten for hours.
  5. WendyTT

    WendyTT Approved members

    Jan 7, 2008
    Thanks so much for all the replies--yes, we have tried everything--from letting her leave a light on and read a book till she falls asleep (I think she gets scared and that is part of the problem). We generally do 2 cookies and half cup of milk every night for a bedtime snack--so what she eats isn't helping. The herbal tea is a good idea too, but not sure she would drink enough of it to work.
  6. StillMamamia

    StillMamamia Approved members

    Nov 21, 2007
    Ask your ped and/or endo about it.:cwds:

    I can totally relate to the taking a long time to fall asleep, but once asleep, you're asleep. It's the story of my life!:( But I'm not taking anything...yet.

    Anyway, I don't know anything about melatonin and diabetes. That's why I suggest you just ask your ped or your endo.

    Some suggestions to maybe help your child "calm down" (even though I believe that's not the actual issue, since I am sure she wants to sleep, right?):

    - yoga, seriously, kids' yoga
    - a notebook next to her bed - to jot down any thoughts, ANY, which cross her mind
    - a slightly earlier wake-up time - maybe just 1/2 hr earlier
    - dimming the lights in the area where she is about an 1hr before bedtime

    Good luck. It's so frustrating wanting to sleep and not being able to.

    PS - forgot - a white noise machine. I used to have one (it no longer works) but it was the best for "calming down".
  7. MomofSweetOne

    MomofSweetOne Approved members

    Aug 28, 2011
    Could you have her bedtime snack be a "free" one? Just wondering because my daughter doesn't fall asleep if we've eaten late and she has IOB. She lies there feeling her BG go up and then down and worries about going low. Bedtime snacks don't typically happen around here for that reason.
  8. bryantfam

    bryantfam Approved members

    Oct 23, 2011
    I asked our np if it was safe at our last visit because the container said not to use it. She said it'd be fine. I want to believe her, but she also was "extremely concerned" about our d management because of an A1C of 7.2 so I'm not sure she has any experience with diabetes.
  9. MommaKat

    MommaKat Approved members

    Sep 2, 2011
    I don't know about melatonin in terms of D, but my son (nonD) needed to use it while recovering from his TBI. While it is considered a mild, relatively safe natural supplement, there are very real concerns about use in adolescents and affect on hormones and growth. Please check with your ped and endo both.
  10. lynn

    lynn Approved members

    Sep 2, 2006
    When my daughter was diagnosed with arthritis she was very worried and afraid of what it meant for her. Then a month later, my mother had a couple of small strokes and stayed at my house to recover. It was a VERY stressful time and my daughter began to have sleep problems. Her rheumatologist suggested melatonin since none of the typical things worked. She took it for about a month and then didn't need it anymore. She liked it because it helped her to fall asleep quickly and get good sleep. She felt rested, which I think helped to calm her thoughts and worries. Thoughts and worries are always worse when we are not sleeping well, it seems.

    I think a call to the endo's office is a good idea.
  11. wilf

    wilf Approved members

    Aug 27, 2007
    I would drop the cookies (and the insulin to cover them) at bedtime. They may be as much the cause of the problem as anything..
  12. TheTestingMom

    TheTestingMom Approved members

    Mar 5, 2010
    We've used Melatonin long before D came along per our pediatrician. Our Endo is aware of it, I put it down as meds he is taking, she asks each time we see her if he is still taking it and hasn't once said anything about it not being okay.

    DS can't "turn off". Before Melatonin I would lay with him at bedtime and you could feel the energy rolling out of him, his wheels (and mouth :D) just kept going and going. He would talk incessantly. But he was exhausted. A lot of things in his/our lives got better once he starting taking Melatonin.

    Of course it wouldn't hurt to check with your Endo.
  13. willie's mom

    willie's mom Approved members

    Oct 21, 2009
    My pediatrician actually suggested that I give my son Melatonin because he was not sleeping at age 3. We gave him a small amount for a few days to set up a routine. He has had it rarely since then but it did work. I have not given since his diagnosis. Just ask your dr. or endo about it.

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