I have never gave Gavin melatonin to help him sleep. The thing is, he falls asleep pretty easily. I change his diaper at 2 AM (yes, I have an alarm every night for it!) and I’ll get him to drink some water at that time. I’ll wait until he is done and I’ll take the bottle and say “Okay baby, go back to sleep.” He always does and then he will wake up lately at 5 or 6, sometimes 7.
But a week ago, I gave him herbal drops called Deep Sleep. I put the dose in his water at night after dinner. I just wanted to see if maybe they would help him sleep longer in the mornings. Let me tell you. They did not help him sleep at all. The first two nights were normal but he didn’t sleep longer. Nothing was different. But on the third night, he woke up at 3 AM and was awake for two hours. He finally fell asleep after I gave him water twice. He slept til 8 AM. He was not very normal during the day, very hyper and often frustrated.
The next night I gave him the drops at night again. The same thing happened and he was awake at night for over two hours before being able to fall asleep again.
On the following night, I did not give him the drops. He still woke up for over two hours. The days were still hit or miss with his mood being overstimulated. It seemed like the effects of the herbs were still in his system?
The next night rolls around and still without drops. Finally, that night he slept normally. I am convinced the drops caused those night awakenings. He is back to normal now. The question is, why did this happen? As an autism parent you’re always seeing different patterns and trying to connect the dots.
Something in these drops were not liked by his system or his brain. Was it the bit of alcohol suspension? The valerian? I don’t see how any of the other herbs could have been disagreeable. I am leaning toward the valerian.
Deep Sleep® contains extracts of: fresh California Poppy (plant)1, fresh Valerian (root) 1, fresh Passionflower (herb tip), fresh Chamomile (flower) 1, fresh Lemon Balm (herb) 1, fresh Oat (seed in milky stage) 1 and Orange (peel) 1. Other Ingredients: U.S. Pharmacopoeial alcohol
To make sure that this was not just a coincidence, I’ll give him the drops again in a few days. (Still recovering from those wakeful nights, plus I had my thyroid biopsy this past week.) I want to see if the drops were really the reason he woke up those nights. It’s so perplexing because all of the ingredients are supposed to be calming to someone with autism or ADHD. So I will update this post when I try the drops again. I feel like I have to in order to know what is good for him and what is not, even if we are going to have some tough experimental nights ahead.