Published on 27 July 2023

Does Melatonin Cause Nightmares? - Are They Frequent?

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Stress and Anxiety is the common cause of nightmares. Not just that, there are various reasons, such as medications, irregular sleep patterns, Post-traumatic disorder, or other mental health problems people face. 

When people face all these things, they tend to overthink, which worsens their sleeping pattern, and they opt for medications over the counter. Getting a proper doctor's consultation before deciding on your own is necessary. 

Melatonin is one of the most used supplements for getting sleep disorders treated. But does it causes nightmares is a question by many? Let us know in detail about Melatonin and any relationship with nightmares.

What Is Melatonin?

Natural Melatonin is available in every human body and is produced in the brain. This lets a person get a peaceful sleep. But people who face sleep disorders tend to consume Melatonin supplements available in forms such as patches, gummies, pills, and liquids. It is generally considered safe, but various observational studies have stated that some people experience nightmares. 

How Does Melatonin Work?

Melatonin is believed to boost the hormones that cause the brain to get enough sleep. Light can block Melatonin production. It is when supplements are used to balance the natural Melatonin production. Not just that, it is believed that Melatonin works differently, according to the person. Some people need it when they experience jetlag, insomnia, or delayed sleep-wake syndrome.

But the standard way Melatonin works in the body is by binding receptors in the brain. Melatonin receptors act in the brain as a clock and other body parts. In simple terms, Melatonin promotes sleep, gets into the normal wake-sleep cycle, regulates body temperature, and promotes quality sleep.

Does Melatonin Cause Nightmares? 

There are statements made by people who have taken Melatonin for their disturbed sleep. But promoting nightmares is still a question by many experts. Even professionals state that people might experience nightmares due to other side effects.

Various medicines in the pharmaceutical industry, such as Trazodone which causes nightmares, are mostly used for different mental health conditions.

Generally, it is believed that nightmares happen due to REM (Rapid Eye Movements). Most dreams are experienced when you are in a deep sleep and going through stressful situations. 

Is Melatonin Consumption Safe?

Melatonin is considered safe for consumption. But it is not yet proven that people under 18 can take the drug. Depending on the doctor's prescription, it can generally be used for a shorter time frame, between a year or two. Millions of people take Melatonin in the US, which has been an effective supplement for people with sleep disorders.

It is necessary to talk to your doctor about the consumption of Melatonin for your children. It can affect the development of hormones. 

Why One Suffer From Nightmares After Taking Melatonin?

The main reason for Melatonin consumption is to get enough sleep. Also, it is mainly consumed by people who are facing sleep disorders. As we know, Dreams occur due to Rapid Eye Movement. More dreams are experienced when a person is in this stage of sleep.

There are other instances as well, such as distress: that's when people start to use Melatonin. Most people who be in stressed and anxious all the time can go through nightmares more frequently. It is difficult to state whether Melatonin causes nightmares or mental conditions.

Possible Side Effects Of Melatonin

Side effects are common if you consume any supplement or a drug. It is normal to cause side effects for the first time as the drug starts working in your body. There are two forms of side effects, common ones that can be ignored, but the doctor should check severe side effects immediately.

Common Side Effects

Severe Side Effects






Low blood pressure


Abdominal cramps



Above are the few side effects faced by many people who have consumed Melatonin. There might be other side effects also that a person can suffer. So if you feel any changes in your body causing negative effects get an instant solution from your doctor.

What To Do When You Suffer From Nightmares After Melatonin Consumption?

When you suffer from Nightmares after Melatonin consumption, you should first lower the dose prescribed by your doctor. It would help if you revised your dose from the medical practitioner in small amounts. It would be best if you were suggested to take 2.5mg of Melatonin to cure such nightmares. 

People should observe their nightmare patterns and lower the dosage accordingly. Some people are also suggested to take Ashwagandha or valerian extract for sleep. This will help you from a deep sleep. 

Tips To Limit Vivid Dreams After Melatonin Consumption

Knowing different tips would help you from vivid dreams. Firstly you should be following the lowered dosage suggested by the doctor. Other than that, follow things like

  • Maintaining sleep hygiene
  • Get off from screens or mobiles an hour before bed.
  • Do things that give you a relaxed mind, such as meditation or reading books
  • Turning off lights atleast an hour before bedtime
  • Maintaining a constant time every day
  • Being under early morning sun for atleast 15 minutes.
  • If you are going through severe Anxiety or depression, get therapy. The therapist would help you the best to cure things.

Also, Read

Bottom Line From Practical Anxiety Solutions

The exact reason for nightmares because of Melatonin consumption is not known. There are various experiences people have gone through where some feel that Melatonin is the only reason for nightmares. Some believe that it might be because of stressful or Anxiety situations. 

Melatonin is considered to be consumed for a shorter duration by most adults. It does have side effects, and it should be taken into consideration. If severe symptoms are getting harsh on you, get help from a general practitioner. Also, take the supplement only after consulting a doctor. 

Frequently asked questions

When you have been prescribed Melatonin for your disruptive sleep, it is recommended for a shorter duration only.
Pregnant or breastfeeding people should be away from the drug, and people suffering from seizures, depression, or autoimmune disorders should not take it.
Melatonin's half-life is around 20 to 50 minutes, as every drug has a stipulated time. Removing the drug entirely from the body can take approximately four to five hours.
Yes, Melatonin is used for treating Anxiety before doing any medical procedures.
Yes, Melatonin should not be taken with anti-seizure drugs, diabetic drugs, blood thinners, and contraceptives.