by Dr Mercola
An estimated 40 percent of Americans are sleep deprived, according to the documentary “Sleepless in America,” with many getting less than five hours of sleep per night.
There are many reasons for this, from intentionally staying up late to watch TV or surf the web to health problems (like pain) that keep you awake.
Millions of Americans struggle to fall asleep each night, including about 10 percent who suffer from chronic insomnia. This latter condition involves difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep, as well as waking up too early in the morning.
In many cases, making changes to your sleep-hygiene routine and lifestyle, such as exercising more and avoiding exposure to blue light at night, can significantly improve your sleep.
However, if you feel like you’ve tried virtually everything and you’re still struggling to get a restful night’s sleep, it might be time to consider two natural supplements, melatonin and 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP).
Why Melatonin Is Important for Sound Sleep
Your brain typically starts secreting the hormone melatonin around 9 or 10 p.m., which makes you sleepy. These regularly occurring secretions help regulate your sleep cycle as well as provide other important health benefits, including helping to prevent cancer.