It’s not the only solution
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Before you start taking any supplements for sleep, be aware that the problem could be solved another way. There are various treatments to help normalize sleep including ensuring good sleep hygiene. Nazario recommends going to bed at the same time every night, removing stimulants that emit blue light (yes, turn off those screens and put them far away from your bed!), and avoiding late afternoon or evening naps. “You may want to start with other natural treatments, including chamomile and hops tea or valerian root,” she suggests. Check out these sleep secrets from doctors.
Melatonin is a natural hormone
A good night’s sleep is a crucial part of a healthy lifestyle. If you struggle to get enough shut-eye through the night, you might be tempted to take melatonin for sleep. But did you know that you already have melatonin in your body? According to the National Sleep Foundation, it’s a natural hormone made by the body’s pineal gland, which is the size of a grain of rice and located just above the middle of the brain. During the day the pineal is inactive, meaning levels of the hormone are barely detectable. However, when the sun goes down, the pineal “turns on” and begins to produce melatonin—typically around 9 p.m. As a result, the hormone’s levels in the blood rise sharply and we begin to feel sleepier. For about 12 hours—throughout the night—those blood levels stay elevated, before the light of a new day when they fall back to low daytime levels.