preview

Melatonin's Lack Of Sleep

Decent Essays
Bio 490 Fall 2015 Melatonin directly improves the diurnal patterns seen in humans controlled by human circadian clocks Abstract: 
 Many individuals in our society struggle from lack of sleep from various different problems. In order to understand the reason why this is a problem I examined the circadian clock and how Melatonin fits in the natural “day/night” cycle and affects human sleeping patterns. Various studies using individuals with either insomnia, stressed college students or a history of sleep disorders measured the initial sleep disturbance patterns. The researchers performed double blind studies with both placebo and Melatonin in order to determine whether an external source of Melatonin helped with sleeping patterns to follow…show more content…
For humans, sleep patterns are regulated by human circadian clocks on a 24-hour time schedule. This regulator is located in the suprachiasmatic nucleus in the human brain. Our human circadian clock notifies us that we should be sleepy at night and awake and alert during the day. It is when this clock doesn't function well we must add supplements such as Melatonin (Golombek DA). The human body is naturally programmed to sleep at a certain time and wake up at a certain time. Several people have trouble sleeping at night due to various problems. These problems range "from sleeping illnesses including but not limited to insomnia, stress and sleep deprivation due to studying, partying and caffeine. Human bodies are designed in such a way that we release Melatonin naturally in certain amounts varying upon the time of day. It has been seen that recently more and more individuals are suffering from not being able to sleep properly at night due to their circadian clocks failing to regulate their sleep-wake patterns. Adolescents stress their circadian clock phase by pushing it past the limit, and they cause a delay of their circadian phases and in return this allows for Melatonin to be secreted and be at higher levels at inappropriate times. (Eckerberg, 2012). Darkness is the signal that triggers Melatonin to be secreted while lightness is the stop signal. When the human body is exposed to light activates a pathway located from the retina to the hypothalamus and reaches the SCN. The function of the SCN is to control day and night time functions based on the preliminary light at the beginning of each day. Melatonin, made by the Pineal gland is inactive during the day time and when the onset of darkness occurs it becomes active. Artificial indoor light can sometimes be enough to inhibit the release of Melatonin from the SCN. The individual needs to be in a dimly
Get Access