Friday, April 11, 2008

Melatonin is Awesome


Well, here's my 2nd installment. I have been checking out many blogs on Autism Hub, and finding so much wonderful information and stories, that I feel a little silly even attempting a blog. But, I guess I find other's entries interesting because it's their life, and something that I haven't fully experienced so it's new. So, perhaps sharing my experiences will be the same for others. I find that I have a story in my head daily about Casey, or Bill and Casey, or Casey and me. I gotta use them I've decided, to fulfill my secret desire to be a writer. So, having said that, I am now going to commit to myself that I am going to write at least daily, or at least once a week. Who knows. But I'm going to write.

So, Melatonin. It's a supplement, it's an antioxidant according to some of the sites I've researched. But for us, it's sorta been a real cool thing! I really did research a lot about it, because Casey has never been a good sleeper, and in fact will tell you that he doesn't need to sleep (especially when he wants to watch the 11pm news, but that's another entry.). However, Bill and I do. So, after brushing and massaging and doing the whole hot bath, oooh oohh comfy, tuck in routine, and still not having any luck, I started looking into Melatonin. I had tried it once, 3 mg, thinking that wasn't much! It was almost frightening how quickly he fell asleep after taking it. So fast in fact that it spooked me and I announced to the world that it he wouldn't ever take that again! I felt terrible for some reason. I had been going through the whole biomed phase of his life, and tried supplements here and there, and non of them had any huge effect that I could see immediately. But this one did, and it scared the shit out of me.

Let's shoot up today, because that was about a year or so ago. I recently went back to the idea of Melatonin because the damn kid just won't sleep through the night. We can take him swimming and have him do 30 laps after a day of school. He will fall asleep and be up by 2am. I know, this could be something with his gut, or whatever. I think though, after doing my research, that he doesn't produce enough Melatonin, which has been proven in some kids with Autism. So, I found a site that suggested how much to give a kid his age and size, and I can tell ya it wasn't 3mgs. It was 1mg. Yes, dumbass! 1mg. Anyway, long story long, we've been giving it to him about 1/2 hour before we want him to go to sleep. And oh, does he go to sleep. It's nice, for him and us. I mean, I lay with him at night until he goes to sleep, watching tv usually, and I have found myself waking up at midnight, with him laying next to me wide awake still watching! So, to go in and do and few dishes and come in to lay with him, and find him asleep is well, marvelous! Melatonin apparantly is extremely safe, and we have had no side effects, at least non that we have seen.

The best part is, he is having great days at school. Getting more sleep certainly can do this for a person. But I read somewhere, and don't ask me to quote it, but apparantly, Melatonin has other effects, aside from the sleep, that causes better behavior and stuff in some kids. We're seeing it, and it's nice. It's nice to have good reports come home.

The worst part? He wakes up at 4am and starts watching tv. So, you know, he gets 6 or 7 hours, and he's completely refresehd apparantly. The good thing about this is, he never comes and wakes us anymore. The bad thing is if my super sensitive ears are sleeping as well as I am, then I don't know how long he's been watching, and that's bad. But he sometimes goes back to sleep, so it sorta works out. A friend suggested he might need a little more Melatonin, and this might be remedied. Maybe I need some so his tv won't wake me!.....

5 comments:

Don said...

A lot of business travelers swear by melatonin for getting over jet lag, sleeping well on the road, etc. The nice thing is that it's something your body produces anyway, not a foreign chemical.

Me, I use scotch. But that's probably not appropriate for the Caser.

S.L. said...

Hi! Love seeing another mom blogging, keep sharing your stories! ;) My oldest (7) has been on melatonin for about a year (or more?) now. She simply cannot fall asleep without it. She would lie in her bed for hours. It's been awesome for her! We are contemplating starting it with our youngest, as her sleep issues are not improving. But, hers is more of an issue waking up at 2 a.m. (and being READY TO GO!). Anyway, glad melatonin is working for Casey. Nice to 'meet' you!

Marla said...

Thanks for visiting my blog! We use Melatonin too. M has been taking it since she was three. In fact...today we just ran out and it will be a top priority to get some before bedtime tonight! It really helps! I have even started taking it and fall asleep so much easier.

kristi said...

Thanks to Cafe Mom, I found out about Melatonin. I started my son last weekend and let me say, he is sleeping better than ever. He has not slept well his entire life!

Bonnie Sayers said...

My son Nick has been taking a chewable melatonin pill for years now and never wakes up. I take benadryl at night to knock me out so I dont scratch since I have eczema.

I am also on cafemom. I have a group there called Autism Resources.