Thursday May 16, 2024

Melatonin Wake Up Call

Episode 35: Melatonin Wake Up Call

Link for CME credit



Karen Hentschel-Franks, DO is an associate professor in Pediatrics-Neurology at UT Health San Antonio.



Pediatrics Now host an executive producer, Holly Wayment and sleep expert Dr. Karen Hentschel-Franks discuss growing concerns over the use of melatonin in children and the importance of sleep hygiene.

Dr. Franks, a recognized expert in the pediatric and sleep medicine field, underscores the need for educating children and parents about the potential dangers, emphasizing possible side effects such as headaches, dizziness, and irritability. Furthermore, she warns about the lack of regulatory control over melatonin, pushing for awareness in selecting only those products with a USP verified mark as a last resort.

The discussion delves into the uncharted territories of melatonin’s long-term effects. Reinforcing the mantra of patient-centric care, Dr. Franks suggests thorough patient evaluation and implementing sleep hygiene, along with behavioral interventions, before resorting to sleep aids like melatonin.

She lays out practical sleep hygiene strategies, including limiting screen time before bedtime, maintaining consistent routines, and addressing medical concerns related to sleep. You'll also learn about innovative techniques Dr. Franks uses to cultivate effective sleep routines in her patients, such as imagination exercises and positive reassurances.

Dr. Franks encourages a holistic approach to children’s sleep problems, highlighting the importance of addressing potential behavioral and environmental factors over relying on supplements.

You will not only learn about the nuances of sleep but also gain intriguing insights into maintaining work-life equilibrium in a demanding field like sleep medicine. Explore Dr. Franks' favorite relaxation activities and get a sneak peek into her clinic's day-to-day activities!

Wrapping up the conversation is an inspiring quote from Christopher Robin that embodies the spirit of strength and resilience. Tune in for an exceptional blend of science, wisdom, and charm centered around better sleep health.

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