Melatonin is a hormone produced by your brain’s pineal gland to help make you sleepy. In fact, it’s referred to as the sleep hormone, because it helps regulate your body’s daily wake-sleep pattern.
Some studies show that short-term melatonin use is not harmful, but remember – these products are not proven safe and effective by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Melatonin has become a very popular medicine in homes and is purchased as tablets, chewables, gummies, and liquids. Some products look and taste like candy, children often love the taste of it, so they eat more than just one or two. Surprisingly, a one time large ingestion does not usually cause serious effects. The main symptom is sleepiness, but it can also lead to upset stomach and irritability.
If you notice that your child has ingested melatonin, do not panic. Take the product away from the child and wipe their mouth out with a soft wet cloth. Do not try to induce vomiting.
After you have removed your child from the situation, immediately call the Missouri Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222. Treatment recommendations are often determined by the amount ingested. The poison center is open all day, every day for poisoning emergencies and questions and our team of medical professionals will help to walk you through the next steps.