Melatonin, melatonin instructions for use
Everyone knows that melatonin is a sleep hormone (in fact, not), but very few people know exactly what functions it performs in the body. We asked Alexander Kalinkin – the sleep doctor, the head of the sleep medicine center – to tell the whole truth about this hormone and explain why it is really needed.
First of all, you need to remember that melatonin is a “night hormone” and not a sleeping pill. And he has clear indications for use. Most often, the drug melatonin is used in an abrupt change of time zones to synchronize biological rhythms with the place where the person arrived. Also in recent years, melatonin has been prescribed to people of the older age group, because, as it was said earlier, over the years its concentration decreases, and therefore the use of the “hormone of the night” in old age helps to improve the quality of sleep and prevent the development of various diseases.
Since melatonin performs an immunomodulatory function, it is not recommended for use in various autoimmune diseases (for example, this applies to people with type I diabetes). Yes, with proper regulation of the immune system, melatonin can prevent possible microdamages and indirectly affect aging processes. But unfortunately, more and more often it is this property that becomes the main precedent for speculation and an argument in appeals to take a drug of this hormone constantly and without a doctor’s prescription, and this is fundamentally wrong and just dangerous. For example, children whose melatonin concentration is already so high do not need to drink this hormone. Plus, melatonin is used to regulate the cycle of wakefulness and sleep, so during the day, and especially in the morning, its reception can lead to negative consequences. While there are no studies that would allow to say that using melatonin, you prolong your life. Additional “hormone night” may unexpectedly affect human health.