Citation: M Rand. "Restless Night of Dread During Sickness: An Experience with Melatonin (exp115603)". Erowid.org. Jul 29, 2021. erowid.org/exp/115603
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I greatly value Melatonin as a sleeping aid and take it from time to time, although never regularly. On this particular night, I was down with a mild case of the cold, and just finished a day of rather fruitless programming work, being stuck on an issue carried over from the previous week. I took my established dose of 5 mg melatonin sublingually at 10:00 PM. About 30 minutes later, I fell asleep, as reliably and quickly as expected. I usually experience significant dream potentiation from melatonin, but do not remember any dreams from this time.
Instead, some time later into the night, I woke up to an anxious and slightly confused state. The room felt like it was too hot for comfortable sleep, and I opened a window. My head was racing with incoherent thoughts about work, the technical issues I was dealing with on the previous day formed a sort of visual geometric chaos before my inner eye. A jittery amalgamation of our company’s software UI, and I was falling through it, or it was unravelling before me. This was not a hallucination of some kind, but it was a distinct haunting image, more pronounced whenever I tried to go back to sleep.
I felt a sense of dread and a strong wish to escape this current situation. The noise from outside prompted me to close the window again, only to remind me of the heat without it being open. The still, hot air was suffocating, yet the noise outside was driving me mad. I thought to myself how dumb and harmful (sleep-wise) the current back and forth were, but was still caught up in the feeling of extreme discomfort.
I can‘t remember the end of this midnight interlude, and I was certainly not well rested on the next day. This experience has not stopped me from taking melatonin on occasion since then, but I now always make sure not to take it when extremely stressed or sick. It might sound commonplace and harmless from description, but I definitely don‘t want to relive it.
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