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4 Day Care Workers Accused of Giving Kids Melatonin

They were given a sleep aid without parents' knowledge or consent, say New Hampshire police

(Newser) - After an investigation that started with a tip about "unsafe practices" at a home day care in Manchester, New Hampshire, the owner and three of her employees have been arrested. In a statement , police said they "determined that the children's food was being sprinkled with melatonin without...

Mislabeled Gummies May Have Too Much Melatonin
Mislabeled Gummies May
Have Too Much Melatonin
New Study

Mislabeled Gummies May Have Too Much Melatonin

In a survey of more than two dozen brands, most weren't properly labeled

(Newser) - Here's some bad bedtime math: Researchers discovered that those melatonin gummies many people take to ensure a good snooze might pack a heftier melatonin punch than advertised, reports the Wall Street Journal . According to the results of a survey of 25 brands published in JAMA , research found that most...

What Sleeping With a Weighted Blanket Does to Your Brain
What Sleeping With
a Weighted Blanket
Does to Your Brain
in case you missed it

What Sleeping With a Weighted Blanket Does to Your Brain

Night use boosts production of melatonin, small study finds

(Newser) - Weighted vests and blankets have been used for decades to induce calm. But how do they work? Researchers may now have part of the answer. Christian Benedict, an associate professor of pharmacology at Sweden's Uppsala University, had heard of "the magic effects of the weighted blanket"—including...

Rise in Sleep Aid Poisoning of Children Worries Experts
Research Finds More Children
Being Poisoned by Melatonin
in case you missed it

Research Finds More Children Being Poisoned by Melatonin

Rate has jumped during the pandemic

(Newser) - Researchers are drawing attention to a rise in poisonings in children involving the sleep aid melatonin—including a big jump during the pandemic. Last year, US poison control centers received more than 52,000 calls about children consuming worrisome amounts of the dietary supplement, a six-fold increase from about a...

She Drugged Kids Into Sleep, Went Tanning, to CrossFit

January Neatherlin was handed a 21-year sentence on Friday

(Newser) - The operator of the Little Giggles day care center in Bend, Ore., had a rule: Parents couldn't drop off or collect their children between 11am and 2pm. That was the period January Neatherlin referred to as "nap time"—and when she headed out to go tanning and...

Cops: Daycare Staff Gave Toddlers 'Special' Gummy Bears

They allegedly used melatonin for calmer nap times

(Newser) - Three daycare workers who allegedly gave toddlers melatonin-laced gummy bears to ensure smoother nap times are facing serious criminal charges. A police spokesman in Des Plaines, Ill., tells People that managers at the Kiddie Junction Daycare Center called authorities after discovering workers had been giving the gummy bears to 2-year-olds...

Scientists: We Know Why Sheep Get Sexed Up in Winter

Scientist figure out how melatonin levels affect breeding

(Newser) - "Why do sheep get frisky in winter?" isn't the beginning of a bad joke, but rather the question that jump-started a joint study by researchers at the University of Nottingham and the University of Bristol. The Guardian reports that scientists may now have an answer, one that could...

Smartphone at Bedtime? You Are Not Getting Very Sleepy

May have to do with the screen's blue light suppressing melatonin, the sleep hormone

(Newser) - The more time we spend on our smartphones, the more our quality of sleep suffers. So conclude researchers in a new study in the journal PLoS ONE . "This is the first study to directly measure actual screen time in natural environments and compare it to sleep quality," the...

Health Warning Prompts Cities to Rethink LED Street Lights

American Medical Association says high-intensity bulbs emit dangerous levels of blue light

(Newser) - Many US cities have been making the move from sodium street lights to LEDs—the bulbs are not only up to 50% more energy efficient than their predecessors, but they last for as many as 20 years and distribute light more evenly. Unfortunately, numerous studies suggest that the levels of...

Cows' 'Night Milk' May Help You Sleep Better

That was the case with lab mice, anyway

(Newser) - If you've tried a warm glass of milk to help ease you into sleep at night and it hasn't worked, perhaps it was just milked at the wrong time. The Wall Street Journal reports on a somewhat whimsical sounding potential treatment for anxiety and insomnia: "night milk....

Don't Blame Sleepiness After Turkey Dinner on Tryptophan

The amino acid has gotten a bad rap—but there's more to the story

(Newser) - Succumbing to Mr. Sandman after a hearty turkey dinner isn't tryptophan's fault. At least, not totally, reports the New York Times , which has done its due diligence in compiling plenty of other sources that back up its stop-blaming-tryptophan campaign. The amino acid found in turkey—and long the...

Caffeine at Night Does More Than Keep You Up Late
Caffeine at Night Does More Than Keep You Up Late
in case you missed it

Caffeine at Night Does More Than Keep You Up Late

Scientists find that espresso 3 hours before bedtime delays the circadian clock

(Newser) - It's no news flash that consuming caffeine close to bedtime can interfere with sleep. But scientists at the University of Colorado Boulder report in the journal Science Translational Medicine that caffeine has another physiological impact on sleep by delaying the body's natural surge in the production of the...

Wear Orange Glasses to Get Better Shut-Eye
Wear Orange Glasses
to Get Better Shut-Eye

Wear Orange Glasses to Get Better Shut-Eye

Tinted eyewear, filters block blue light emitting from electronic devices: study

(Newser) - You may be tempted to stay up to check out all the new late-night TV hosts , but make sure you've got your orange glasses on first. Various studies and expert opinion suggest that special filters, light bulbs, and the aforementioned orange-tinted eyewear can help block melatonin-disrupting blue light emitted...

Dangerous 'Microsleeps' Follow Daylight Saving Time

Scientists warn of sudden lapses in attention

(Newser) - Feeling groggy after the Daylight Saving Time switch? Scientists say you better watch out for "microsleeps," tiny lapses in attention that can create problems at work and accidents on the road, the Christian Science-Monitor reports. The microsleeps apparently account for extra car crashes and workplace injuries that follow...

Screens Mess With Our Sleep—Even If We Get 8 Hours

'Blue light' affects melatonin levels, which can have dangerous long-term effects: study

(Newser) - Your iPad or smartphone could well be hurting your sleep patterns, even if you're getting in a full eight hours of shuteye, researchers say—and the effects could be long-term. Over a five-night period, researchers in Boston had some subjects read for four hours a night on an iPad;...

Light at Night May Interfere With Breast Cancer Drug

Even dim light suppresses melatonin, which appears to make tumors resist treatment

(Newser) - Light at night has already been widely linked to poorer sleep quality , but now even dim light is being shown to interfere with a breast cancer drug's ability to do its job. So says a new study on rats out of Tulane University School of Medicine, which found that...

Feeling Groggy? Go Camping (for a Week)

A week outdoors can reset your sleeping patterns: study

(Newser) - Artificial light—and reduced access to sunlight—has put our biological clocks in need of fresh batteries. A new study explains that our fondness for an electric glow has messed with our sleep hormones, making us stay up later than evolution intended in exchange for a lack of alertness in...

New Drug Promises Better Sleep for the Jet-Lagged

Substance works a lot like today's popular but unregulated melatonin supplements

(Newser) - A new drug promises to put an end to jet lag and enable better sleep for travelers, swing-shift crews, and insomniacs, the Economist reports. Tasimelteon works a lot like today's popular but unregulated melatonin supplements, bonding with brain receptors to stimulate melatonin production and REM sleep. The distinction is significant...

Light May Slow Dementia
 Light May
 Slow Dementia 

Light May Slow Dementia

Brighter environs cut depression in research hailed as 'spectacular'

(Newser) - Brighter daytime lighting can significantly soften dementia symptoms, according to a Dutch study that found better moods and sleep patterns correlated with brighter environs. Combined with extra doses of the hormone melatonin, lighting slowed onset of symptoms by up to 5%, which “may not sound like a huge amount,...

City Lights Linked to Breast Cancer
City Lights Linked
to Breast Cancer

City Lights Linked to Breast Cancer

Scientists believe lights suppress tumor-fighting hormone

(Newser) - Women who live in areas with a large about of night-time light face an increased risk of breast cancer, and scientists believe it may be because the light interferes with a tumor- fighting hormone, reports the Washington Post. Researchers compared satellite images at night with cancer registries and found breast...

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