Is It Okay to Take Melatonin With Ambien?

Medically Reviewed on 10/27/2022
Melatonin and Ambien
Most doctors typically advise avoiding the use of melatonin and Ambien together.

The use of melatonin and Ambien together is generally considered safe, but you should be aware that doing so can increase sedation and significantly impair coordination.

  • Melatonin and Ambien are both used to treat insomnia (a common sleep disorder that makes it difficult to sleep).
  • Melatonin is an antidepressant, whereas Ambien is sedative-hypnotic.
  • The side effects of both medicines are similar, such as drowsiness, dizziness, or confusion. Taking these two drugs together may increase side effects, especially in older adults. 

Most of the time, doctors may advise avoiding taking melatonin and Ambien together.

What is melatonin and what are its uses?

Melatonin is a natural hormone that is secreted by the body to regulate sleep cycles. There are over-the-counter or nonprescription melatonin supplements available.

During the night, the body triggers to produce more melatonin, which makes the body sleep. During the day, light may decrease melatonin secretion and make you stay awake longer. Those who suffer from insomnia (a sleeping disorder) have low melatonin levels. To treat insomnia, melatonin supplements could be helpful.

Uses of melatonin

Melatonin supplements are commonly used to treat:

How does melatonin work?

Melatonin is a natural hormone produced by the human body's pineal gland in the brain, which is a highly lipid-soluble hormone. The pineal gland in the brain and a small portion of the retina produce the hormone melatonin, which is then released into the bloodstream. This sends signals to the receptor agonist in the brain and various other areas of the body to regulate sleep cycles.

What are the side effects of melatonin?

Melatonin supplements are mostly safe and have very few side effects if taken for short periods.

Side effects of melatonin may include:

What are the precautions of taking melatonin?

Melatonin supplements may have contraceptive pill-like effects that make it difficult to conceive. Melatonin should not be used while pregnant or trying to get pregnant because there is no evidence to support its safety or efficacy in this situation.

Melatonin is considered safe when taken in doses of 3 mg per day orally in children and 5 mg per day in adolescents.

People with bleeding disorders should not take melatonin because it could exacerbate their condition. Consuming melatonin causes blood pressure to rise in those with high blood pressure (hypertension).


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What is Ambien?

Ambien belongs to a class of sedative-hypnotics typically used to treat sleep disorders (insomnia). This regulates the sleep cycles. Ambien acts on the brain, produces a calming effect, and helps you sleep faster.

  • It should be taken orally on an empty stomach just before bedtime because it acts quickly and makes you fall asleep. Taking it after eating may delay the action.
  • Take this medicine only when you have time for a full night's sleep, at least seven to eight hours.
  • After taking medicine, if you wake up before full sleep, it may affect your daily activities that require full attention.
  • Dosage may vary depending on age, gender, and any other medical conditions.
  • The dose should not exceed 10 mg per day.
  • Women and elderly people are prescribed lower doses to decrease the side effects.
  • Take the medication as advised by the physician.

What are the side effects of Ambien?

Ambien has side effects that are similar to those of melatonin, including:

Some severe side effects include:

A few side effects of Ambien that are different from melatonin include:

Medically Reviewed on 10/27/2022
Image Source: iStock image

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