A neurophysiologist shares three factors that affect your sleep
“We’re already extracting it naturally,” says Nicola. So when you take melatonin, “your brain is getting this natural hormone, but it’s a synthetic version,” she adds. “It probably thinks What’s going on?'”
Look, melatonin can be useful as a short-term solution to reset your circadian rhythm. But if you take it at night, it is limited evidence2 that it will improve the quality of sleep. It may make it easier to fall asleep a little faster, but it won’t necessarily make it easier stay sleep or reach the stages of deep sleep. That’s why experts, including Nicola, don’t recommend taking it as a nighttime sleep supplement.
“I’m really against it. The only time I don’t mind is to help get back into circadian rhythms across time zones,” she notes. If you’re looking for a nighttime solution, look for a non-hormonal formula with ingredients better suited for nighttime use (here’s a list of our favorites).