Experts advise against giving your restless child melatonin over poisoning fears - Daily Mail

Experts advise against giving your restless child melatonin over poisoning fears - Daily Mail

Experts advise against giving your restless child melatonin over poisoning fears - Daily Mail
Sep 29, 2022 1 min, 13 secs

Parents are being warned against giving children melatonin following a surge in accidental poisonings.

Pediatric melatonin ingestions reported to poison control across the US between 2012-2021.

A store shelf of melatonin supplements formulated for children

- Melatonin is one of the most widely used sleep aids in the US

- Melatonin content can vary widely by product so parents are urged to use caution 

Adeel Rishi, vice chair of the AASM, said: 'The availability of melatonin as gummies or chewable tablets makes it more tempting to give to children and more likely for them to overdose.'

He added: 'Parents should talk directly with their child's health care professional before giving their children melatonin products.'

The AASM's warning comes on the heels of a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published in June that said annual pediatric ingestions of melatonin increased 530 per cent from 2012 to 2021, which time there were a total of 260,435 ingestions. 

Melatonin accounted for nearly 5 per cent of all pediatric poisoning cases in 2021 compared with 0.6 per cent in 2012, and was the most frequently ingested substance among children reported to national poison control centers

While the vast majority of cases reported to poison control were asymptomatic, around 84 per cent, more severe symptoms involved the gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, or central nervous systems. 

'In addition, serotonin, a breakdown product of melatonin, was found in 26 per cent of supplements at potentially clinically significant doses that can increase the risk for serotonin toxicity in children,' the CDC reported.   

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