Dosages

Dosages

There is no established dosage for melatonin that is widely accepted. In addition, experts note that most brands contain impurities that cannot be characterized, as well as dissimilar amounts of actual hormone.

When buying in America, please note that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not strictly regulate herbs and supplements. There is no guarantee of strength, purity or safety of products, and effects may vary.

You should read product labels, and discuss doses with a qualified healthcare provider before starting therapy.

Below are dosages used by researchers exploring various disorders. (Summarized from the Mayo Clinic.)

Adults (18 years and older)

Disorder Dosage
(milligrams)
When
Alzheimer’s disease (sleep disturbances) 0.5 nightly, 1 hr before bedtime
Bipolar disorder (sleep disturbances) 10 nightly by mouth
Cancer 10 to 50,
most commonly 20
nightly
Circadian rhythm entraining (in blind persons) 5 to10 nightly
Critical Illness / ICU sleep disturbance 3 nightly
Delayed sleep phase syndrome 5 5 hrs before bedtime
Depression (sleep disturbances) 5 nightly
Headache prevention 5 to 10 nightly
Hypertension 1 to 3 short periods of time
Insomnia in the elderly 3 to 5 30 – 120 min before bedtime
Insomnia of unknown origin (in the non-elderly) 1 to 5 nightly
Jet lag 0.1 to 0.5,
5 and 8
Target bedtime at the destination
Schizophrenia (sleep disturbances) 2 (not stated)
Seasonal affective disorder 0.25 to 5 daily
Sleep enhancement in healthy people 0.1 to 6 30 – 60 minutes before bedtime

Children (younger than 18 years)

There is limited study of melatonin supplements in children, and safety is not established.
Use of melatonin should be discussed with the child’s physician prior to starting.

Disorder Dosage
(milligrams)
When
Circadian rhythm entraining in blind children 2.5 to 10 nightly
Preoperative anxiety 0.1, 0.25 or 0.5 per kilogram (of child’s weight?) (not stated)
Seizure disorder in children 5 to 10 nightly
Sleep disturbances in children with neuro-psychiatric disorders (mental retardation, autism, psychiatric disorders) 0.5 to 10 nightly
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