Finding natural ways to get a good night’s sleep
Although it isn’t one of our 10 Steps to Sexy, getting enough rest is key to being your most sensual self. But so many factors can get in the way of getting good sleep. That’s why we asked the question, “Do sleep gummies work?”
As a chronic insomniac, I volunteered to put melatonin gummies to the test. Could an over-the-counter sleep aid shaped like a gummy bear and smelling like a bag of Halloween candy really be the answer to sleepless nights?
What are melatonin gummies?
Sleep gummies are another name for melatonin supplements that come in a gummy form, like children’s vitamins. Natural melatonin is a hormone made in your brain. It is stimulated by darkness and it is supposed to help you feel drowsy as your bedtime draws near. But as we age, we produce less. Production can also be impacted by travel and jet lag or odd work hours. This is why melatonin supplements have grown increasingly popular.
Some gummies for sleep also contain herbs associated with rest, like chamomile, valerian root, lemon balm and lavender. The sleep aid gummies I tried also contained L-theanine, an amino acid believed to help ease anxiety and stress.
Are gummy sleep aids safe and effective?
Because I have some weird allergies, I checked in with Dr. Allen Green from the Center for Optimum Health on not only the safety but the effectiveness of sleep vitamins before trying an over-the-counter gummy sleep remedy. Dr. Green was enthused about the effectiveness of melatonin but admitted that he hasn’t recommended it to his patients in gummy form. However, aside from the possible drawbacks of added sugar, he concedes that gummies provide an efficient way to absorb melatonin.
Of the brands available at my grocery store, the two highest rated were Olly sleep gummies and Nature’s Bounty. Both contain 3 mg of melatonin and L-theanine as well as 2g added sugars. With no other way to differentiate, I bought the lower-priced sleep gummy brand, which was Nature’s Bounty. However next time I might try to shop around for a sleep gummy brand with less added sugar.
In reading the instructions on the Nature’s Bounty sleep gummies bottle, I noticed a safety warning that you should discontinue use after two months. This made me want to know more about the safety of taking melatonin. According to Dr. Green, it is perfectly safe for most adults to take melatonin for short periods of time, particularly if your body clock is thrown off for some reason, like jet lag. However, not enough is known about long-term use to be able to say whether it is safe and effective long-term.
Is it bad to take sleeping gummies every night?
After talking to Dr. Green and reading up on melatonin, I started to wonder if it was bad to take melatonin sleep supplements every night for two months, even if the use was discontinued at that time. I did find one study on the long-term use of melatonin supplements indicating that only “mild side effects” occurred with long-term use. And since I personally have no intention of using gummy sleep supplements for the long term, I decided to go ahead and give them a try.
How well do sleep gummies work?
After all the research into the safety of sleep gummies, I already knew I was not the ideal user for gummy melatonin supplements. Sleep gummies are most effective when taken one or two hours before bedtime. But my sleeplessness is occasional and unpredictable. I didn’t want to take extra melatonin every night if it isn’t necessary.
I finally decided on taking the gummies as a sleep aid after I’d tried falling asleep for about half an hour on my own. Then I would get back out of bed and chew the gummies, hoping they would bring the sleep that eluded me.
And did they?
Using gummies that help you sleep is an effective tactic, at least for me. I found that within a short time of chewing the gummies, my body almost melted into the bed. I didn’t necessarily fall asleep quickly. However, relaxation was complete and all-consuming. But the best part of using sleep melatonin supplements was waking up in the morning feeling refreshed.
I never read that feeling well rested was an effect of melatonin but for me, that was the result. I will definitely make sure to pack some sleep-well gummies in my carry-on any time I have to travel overseas.
What are the best sleep gummies?
There are at least a dozen highly rated melatonin sleep gummy brands on the market. The one I tried, Nature’s Bounty, is one of the higher rated.
However, the sleep gummy that worked for me is not vegan and it does contain sugar and added sleep-promoting ingredients. If these are things you’re looking to avoid, here’s a link to shop for other customer-rated brands:
What to look for in a sleep gummy
Here are a few things to check for on the label of a sleep gummies bottle before you buy:
- Ingredient transparency – Do they list all the ingredients by name on the label?
- Does the sleep gummy supplement have an NSF or USP seal? – A seal from NSF or from United States Pharmacopeia indicates that the product has been examined by a third party to ensure it meets public health standards
- What is the melatonin dose? – The amount of melatonin in a sleep gummy can range from about 1mg to 10 mgs. If you’re not sure what dose is right for you, check with your doctor before making a purchase.
If your melatonin supplement doesn’t work, you might have the wrong dose
Don’t assume that a bigger dose means a more effective sleep gummy. The best sleep aid gummies for you may be a low dose. According to John’s Hopkins Medicine, too large of a dose can be problematic. And in some cases, reducing the dose makes the melatonin effective. In fact, it is recommended to start with a 1-3mg dose and adjust from there as needed. In addition, Hopkins’ sleep expert Luis F. Buenaver recommends discontinuing use if the sleep aid isn’t working after a week or two.
Another possibility is to try a different type of sleep aid such as a cannabis-infused gummy like delta 8 gummies. Some insomniacs find more success with THC than with melatonin but this is an individual decision with its own advantages and drawbacks.
Do not buy sleep gummies for kids without a doctor’s recommendation
Although this article is all about using melatonin gummies for adults to help improve sexual health and wellness with a better night’s sleep, as a mother, I know there are a lot of questions about sleep gummies for children.
As you shop for adult gummies, you’re going to come across melatonin gummies for kids. And as I did my research into the safety and effectiveness of gummy sleep aids, I stumbled upon a lot of warnings about giving melatonin gummies to kids. While it can be safe and effective for some children, melatonin is a hormone and there is some indication that it can have an effect on a child’s growth and development. In short, ask a doctor before you buy.
As for us adults, a sleeping vitamin may be key to looking well rested in the morning and ready to tackle the day. However, before you start a sleep gummy habit, consider an even less invasive alternative. It might just be that the blue light from the device you use in the evening is playing havoc with your body’s natural melatonin production. What might be the best solution of all is to turn off the tablet or phone and have a good, old-fashioned roll in the hay before bed. And even if it doesn’t improve your sleep, it will certainly help you wake up smiling.
Because each body is different, it is important to speak with your doctor before starting any new supplement.
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