Melatonin and Traumatic Brain Injury

It’s been well documented in medical journals for years that those who suffer brain injury often complain of sleep disturbances. True, loss of sleep after a traumatic brain injury, may in part be due to the associated pain or anxiety following such incidents. However, medical studies clearly indicate that loss of sleep after a traumatic brain injury is often due the brain’s inability to properly produce melatonin after severe trauma.

In 2010, the American Academy of Neurology published studies researched by Dr. Rajaratnam, a leading physician studying the links between loss of sleep and brain injury. He reported that the results from the study “suggest that the brain injury may disrupt the brain structures that regulate sleep, including the production of melatonin”. Simply put, lack of melatonin production in the brain results in sleep loss.

A study was performed in an Intensive Care Unit in Athens, Greece that treated eight patients consecutively who were admitted to the ICU following a severe head injury. The melatonin levels were charted from blood tests of these patients. Those patients with the greatest head trauma displayed the highest disrupted patterns of melatonin secretions.

Science indicates that the melatonin produced by the body serves to protect the brain and can be a valuable aid in recovery. How? Melatonin shields the brain from neurodegeneration and oxidative stress. Additionally, melatonin encourages the surviving neurons in the brain after trauma to promote regeneration of damaged brain tissue.

Speak with a physician regarding using the use of melatonin. It is possible that a melatonin supplement may be added to your recovery regimen by your physician.

The Law Offices of Edward A. Smith is a personal injury firm located in Sacramento, California that specializes handling severe traumatic brain injury claims. Please contact them for free legal advice at (800) 404-5400. Their website is: www.autoaccident.com.

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