Melatonin for ASD children

Both my children have been prescribed melatonin. They both have ASD. My son is at the severe end of the spectrum, he only sleeps for about 3 hours at a time. My daughter is 11 and HF. She can sleep for 11 hours but takes hours to fall asleep gets more and more anxious, calls out, gets up and shouts and screams for ages saying shes scared. Doc said getting off to sleep quicker will help her anxiety in the evenings, to break the circle- feeling anxious-staying awake-feeling anxious etc.

Trouble is in the info leaflet it says it hasn't been tested and is not licensed for under 18's.

Does anyone use it? What do people think?

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  • Hi. Our 4yo daugter also been prescribed melatonin. She is also diagnosed with ASD. We went through a period when she didnt sleep for more than 2-3 hours at a time, or when falling asleep took 3 hours of her jumping on the bed etc. When she was taking melatonin, it worked and she did fall asleep within 5-20 mins but she would wake up in the middle of the night like 2am and wouldnt sleep till 6am at least. Obviously every spectrum is different but thats what weve had to deal with for about 2 years. Last time weve spoke to our paediatrician, weve mentioned about these problems and weve been advised to increase the dose from 2mg to 4mg. We did that and it helped, but not in regards to waking up at night. Apparently you can get the sustained release capsules that will last longer than normal ones, but unfortunately our daugher doenst know how to swallow a tablet so we didnt use them at all. 

    Not sure if that helped or not but recently our daughter started sleeping better and the wake up episodes became less frequent - 2-4 times per month inetsad of 3-6 times per week. Once weve realised she falls asleep bit quicker, weve spoke to our paediatrician and decided to gradually decrease the dose. We went from 4mg every night, then 2mg every night, then 2mg every other night and now down to no metatonin at all. Our daughter takes 15-30 mins to go to sleep instead of 5 but she doesnt take melatonin at all now, and not sure if thats related but she started sleeping better and longer. 

    Hope this helps?

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