What is the Melatonin Hormone?
Melatonin hormones are produced by the pineal gland. Melatonin levels regulate sleep and wakefulness. We all have an internal clock, called the circadian rhythm. This clock tells us when it is time to sleep, wake up, and it regulates our body, including our blood pressure and temperature as it prepares for cooler seasons. Research indicates that it may also play a role in inhibiting cancer cell growth. As you might expect, this hormone is released largely at night.
Your body has melatonin receptors which are activated to do the work of melatonin at a cellular level. In some studies, it is suggested that scientists look into melatonin definition as a possible “scavenger” of free radicals, which would mean it also has a role as an antioxidant and a protector of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. However, too much melatonin and you may suffer from dizzy spells, extreme drowsiness, headaches, or a lack of interest in sex.
Because hormones play such an important part in regulating sleep patterns, low levels, especially low levels of melatonin, are critical to analyze when looking at your overall hormone health profile. Some of the uses people have found for over-the-counter versions of melatonin include using it to help with insomnia, jet lag or seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
The system of hormones and how they interact with each other, as well as gland function, work in a constant feedback loop. This means that an analysis of your hormone profile should include an assessment of your melatonin levels along with other hormones.
The Signs and Symptoms of Low Testosterone
Why are Melatonin Hormones Important for Men?
Insomnia, which is the inability to fall or stay asleep, is a debilitating force that causes serious health complications. When sleep patterns are poor, fatigue is the obvious result. But, did you know that insomnia can also lead to heart disease or heart failure, high blood pressure or increased risk of a stroke, even diabetes?
Most of us suffer short periods of insomnia at one time or another. Stress, a poor diet or simply old age, can rob us of proper sleep. However, if you begin to suffer from chronic insomnia, losing as much as three nights a week for a minimum of three months, you should see a health professional to determine the cause. While the proper treatment may include behavioral, psychological and medical solutions, this condition should always include a full-scale hormone test and a look at melatonin.
Melatonin also influences the response of growth hormone (GH) which helps with the recovery of the muscle mass after exercise. Melatonin also prevents the damage and inflammation caused by free radicals (toxins) in the body. Proper levels of melatonin support the body as it guards against degenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, strokes and even the prevention of migraines.
The National Institutes of Health estimates that about 30% of the population complains of having some kind of sleep disruption, with 10% experiencing daytime symptoms that include a lack of cognitive function, daytime fatigue, even an increase in the likelihood that you will have an accident. This is an important hormone to watch.
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What are the Benefits of Melatonin Hormones for Men?
There are hidden benefits to a night of restorative sleep, especially as we age. The proper amount of melatonin is what can give your body the restful sleep that is needed to keep hormones in balance. In turn, this allows all of your organs and systems to function at peak efficiency.
Melatonin triggers the reproductive cycle including the adolescent growth of the testes and other hormonal changes. As you age, it is common to begin experiencing erectile dysfunction or a lessening of interest in sex. Getting and maintaining an erection that allows for satisfying sexual intercourse can be a problem. If this becomes a regular occurrence, you may want to check with a doctor who has experience with hormone analysis and replacement therapy.
The relationship between sexual activity and good sleep patterns is well known. After orgasm, the body produces hormones that help us fall asleep and sleep more soundly. Oxytocin and vasopressin are two hormones that are released during sexual activity. This release usually works alongside the secretion of melatonin. Low testosterone can also be made worse if there is a lack of sexual activity or no restorative sleep, both situations that can arise from having melatonin levels that are too low. It all works together.
Better sex, better sleep, both lead to better health. This is why it’s important for men as they age to have hormone levels looked at regularly, including a melatonin count. It could be with the simplest of adjustments you can begin feeling better right away.
Schedule a Hormone Consultation Today
With sleep being such an important part of our overall health, there are some very important reasons to look at the hormonal balance in your body and make adjustments if you are suffering from a lack of melatonin, or another hormone, like testosterone.
Many patients of Dr. Berman arrive with complaints that seem to have no real medical cause. Weight gain when there has been no change in diet or eating habits, extreme fatigue, water retention, erectile or sexual dysfunction, and episodes of depression that they have not experienced before. Another common complaint is insomnia, which is directly related to low melatonin.
Understanding the impact this has on your health, especially as you age, means taking a serious look at the hormone composition that you have currently, and whether there are depleted levels causing a reduction in melatonin.
Dr. Berman is a licensed MD, fully trained, but also certified in endocrinology and hormone balance. His approach is to provide customized, personalized hormone replacement therapy, but only after a comprehensive hormone test and review. Using the smallest amounts possible, and continually monitoring how all hormones in your system are functioning over time, Dr. Berman can restore your quality of life in many ways.
Call to arrange your personalized hormone profile by calling (561) 841-1837. Once the results are in, Dr. Mikhail Berman’s office will arrange for a private consultation and complete physical. Take that next step toward better health and a more vibrant, youthful you by calling his office today.