Melatonin and Alcohol: 6 Reasons Not to Combine Them

melatonin and alchol

Many people turn to a glass of wine or two to help them relax before bed, as drinking alcohol in moderation has a sedating effect at first. Some studies reveal that alcohol inhibits the natural release of melatonin in the body. This may stop your body’s release of the hormone into your body before going to sleep, and may ruin your night. To answer this question accurately, we need to make a distinction between acute withdrawal (often referred to as detox) and post-acute withdrawal. Acute withdrawal or detox refers to the period it takes to eliminate alcohol from the system physically.

melatonin and alchol

If you or anyone you know is undergoing a severe health crisis, call a doctor or 911 immediately. A study revealed that over 70% of people living with some form of alcohol use disorder (AUD) suffer from alcohol-induced sleep problems. Some other studies also suggest that the percentage goes up to 91%. These numbers establish the basis for an educated fact that alcohol has a direct impact on sleep patterns.

Risks Of Mixing Alcohol and Melatonin

However, these supplements are not authorised for sale in the UK and it’s a prescription-only medicine. Research suggests that melatonin might reduce evening confusion and restlessness in people with Alzheimer’s disease, but it doesn’t seem to improve cognition. She has an interest in medical writing and has a keen interest in evidence-based medicine.

melatonin and alchol

At the end you ‘ll know if you can combine the 2 if you want to sleep better. With any over-the-counter dietary supplement not regulated by the FDA, it’s important to know the source of your product, ensure that you’re buying from a reputable brand, and look into the quality of ingredients. Always check expiration dates and use the minimal effective dose for you. Melatonin supplements are made from synthetic melatonin, which, like all supplements, isn’t fully regulated or approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), so quality can vary. BetterHelp can connect you to an addiction and mental health counselor.

There isn’t much research into the effects of taking the two at the same time, but experts say it’s best not to do it. Alcohol and melatonin together can make you sleep very deeply, so you do not breathe properly and can have difficulty waking up. Melatonin does not affect how contraception works, including the combined pill and emergency contraception. The usual dose is one 3mg tablet of melatonin but your doctor may recommend 2 tablets (6mg) if needed. Get helpful tips and guidance for everything from fighting inflammation to finding the best diets for weight loss…from exercises to build a stronger core to advice on treating cataracts.

Risks and side effects of melatonin

The AASM warns that the amount of actual melatonin in tablets or liquid can vary, from less than what the label says to much more. The greatest variation is found in the chewable tablets, which are unfortunately the ones children are most likely to take. It’s also hard — impossible, even — to know what else might be in the supplement. The AASM reports that some melatonin products also contain serotonin, a hormone and neurotransmitter that requires a prescription.

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  • Interestingly, this type of insomnia from alcohol may present in the form of excessive sleep for the first few days, followed by more extended periods without sleep.
  • The function of this hormone is to trigger the feeling of sleepiness.
  • Instead, it is most useful in shifting the timing of your sleep by adjusting your circadian rhythm, also known as the 24-hour internal clock that regulates your sleep-wake cycle.
  • If you have any concern that our content is inaccurate or it should be updated, please let our team know at [email protected].

If you’ve made all these shifts and are still struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep, consult with a doctor to get to the root of the problem. If you’re looking to mix melatonin with alcohol it is not a good idea. If you have any concerns about taking melatonin and alcohol and need further guidance you should speak to your doctor before using it. Firstly and most importantly, one needs to understand that each melatonin brand has specific instructions for usage, and these instructions should be taken as the rule for the amounts of the drug that should be taken at any given time. At the same time, it is still important to consult a qualified healthcare professional before using the drug to make sure that one has no health issues that may interact with melatonin.

The Dangers of Mixing Alcohol & Melatonin

Your body likely produces enough melatonin for its general needs. However, evidence suggests that melatonin supplements promote sleep and are safe for short-term use. Melatonin can be used to treat delayed sleep phase and circadian rhythm sleep disorders in the blind and provide some insomnia relief. Treat melatonin as you would any sleeping pill and use it under your doctor’s supervision. Over 70% of subjects diagnosed with alcohol use disorder (AUD) suffer from alcohol- induced sleep problems and some studies suggest that the percentage could reach up to 91%1,2.

These can include extreme drowsiness, dizziness and increased anxiety. It may also make you more likely to experience raised blood pressure. Both smoking and excessive caffeine consumption can alter the blood levels of melatonin, which may affect the dosing. Tobacco smoking reduces, while caffeine increases melatonin blood levels. If you start smoking or undergo smoking cessation, your doctor may need to adjust the dose of melatonin.

In addition, alcohol may reduce the effect of melatonin on sleep. It is best to avoid alcohol consumption during melatonin therapy. Talk to a healthcare professional if you have any questions or concerns. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor. Whether you’re taking melatonin supplements or not, alcohol disrupts your natural melatonin levels and your circadian rhythm [3].

  • Most of the currently prescribed medications to treat this complex problem retain a high risk of side effects and/or dependence.
  • We would like also to extend our thanks to Dr. Leanne Trick for her efforts in reviewing the manuscript.
  • Apart from the aforementioned symptoms, some severe complications may also arise from these two substances’ interactions.
  • This isn’t a cause for concern if you’re just having a drink or two here and there , but if you are struggling with regular sleep issues, it’s worth considering your alcohol consumption.
  • In some cases, using a dose as high as 10 mg seems to actually have the opposite of the desired effect, creating wakefulness and insomnia.

The United States Pharmacopeia (USP) evaluates supplements to meet appropriate manufacturing standards. This helps ensure the quality and accurate dosage of each tablet. To see our best sleep aid, check out our review of Performance Lab Sleep. This condition can be a huge obstacle for a person trying to maintain sobriety. Insomnia can cause irritability and interfere with normal functioning. Sleep problems can also cause depression, anxiety, and even hallucinations.

Melatonin supplements are generally safe, but you should avoid mixing them with alcohol. Risks include increased dizziness and anxiety, and trouble thinking clearly. Along with the possible side effects of combining alcohol and melatonin, it’s also important to understand that alcohol on its own can have a negative impact eco sober house rating on your sleep cycles. Alcohol is a depressant so it can make you feel sleepy, but it can also prevent you from getting deep sleep. During hours of darkness, the pineal gland produces more melatonin to help a person feel sleepy and prepare to go to bed. During daylight hours, the pineal gland stops producing melatonin.

Alcohol is clearly dangerous to mix with medications like blood thinners, mood stabilizers, pain relievers, and antibiotics—but what about supplements like melatonin? Here’s what to know about how alcohol and melatonin affect the body individually and when taken in tandem. Melatonin supplements don’t carry a lot of risks or negative side effects. Most of the time, in controlled doses, melatonin won’t have any noticeable effects on your body or sleep cycle.

How to Safely Use Melatonin

A person who has taken melatonin and alcohol may have trouble walking and driving. These side effects can have potentially dangerous consequences, as they put a person at risk of accidents and losing consciousness. While melatonin can be an effective sleep aid, combining it with alcohol can make it less effective. However, mixing melatonin and alcohol doesn’t appear to be harmful, so shouldn’t be a cause for worry if it happens every now and then. Breathing issues such as sleep apnea and snoring can lead to poor sleep quality.

Disturbed sleep represents a special concern for AUD patients as it can lead to depression, cardiovascular complications, low quality of life, relapse, vehicle accidents and suicidal ideation4,5,14–17. Treated AUD subjects tend to relapse to alcohol to maintain a good sleep as a self-medication mechanism18. Therefore, no matter how successful AUD treatments are, the persistence of disturbed sleep represents a huge barrier to successful long term abstinence19.

Our helpline is offered at no cost to you and with no obligation to enter into treatment. Neither nor AAC receives any commission or other fee that is dependent upon which treatment provider a visitor may ultimately choose. Isaak Stotts is an in-house medical writer in AddictionResource. Isaak learned addiction psychology at Aspen University and got a Master’s Degree in Arts in Psychology and Addiction Counseling. After graduation, he became a substance abuse counselor, providing individual, group, and family counseling for those who strive to achieve and maintain sobriety and recovery goals. As earlier stated, liquor can disrupt the amount of pineal hormone produced in the body.