As young adults, it is unlikely that we get adequate sleep. The added stressors in our lives make it difficult to fall asleep easily and sleep through the night. Falling asleep naturally might not be possible, and some have turned to sleep aids, such as. drinking tea, limiting phone usage before bed, and more commonly, taking melatonin.. Melatonin is one of the most common sleep aids on the market. But as with any medicinal supplement, it can sometimes affect other cycles in our body. The common belief about melatonin is that it alters the effectiveness of birth control. But is this true?
Melatonin is a naturally-occurring hormone produced by the pineal gland in the brain that regulates the sleep-wake cycle. Although it is found in the body, many use it as a supplement to help with jet lag, sleep disorders, and sleep enhancement for people who are already healthy. Many OBGYNs point out that many birth control options already increased the natural hormone levels in the body, so the added use of melatonin can elevate the melatonin levels in our bodies.. Melatonin was found to interfere more with progestin-only birth control pills. Additionally, OBYGNs say that excessive melatonin intake may affect other natural cycles such as menstruation and ovulation, since melatonin is produced in the same gland that produces other hormone levels in females..
With that being said, there are no definitive studies in the field that support these claims. So, if you are concerned about taking melatonin and how it might alter the effectiveness of your birth control, talk to your doctor. Your doctor will provide you with information on other possible sleep aids, which one is right for you, the correct dosage, and how to make sure that any sleep aid you take does not affect your natural sleep cycle.