Circadin is a prescription-only medication that contains melatonin, a hormone found naturally in your body.
Melatonin is in your blood when you’re asleep or awake, and the amount in your blood will go up and down during the day. For example, melatonin levels are low during the daytime and then when it’s dark, more melatonin is released, which makes us feel tired and get us ready for sleep.
10 tablet(s) / 2 mg - £24.99
20 tablet(s) / 2 mg - £34.99
Buying Circadin online in the UK
You can order Circadin from Zava and this service is quick and easy to use – just follow these simple steps:
- Fill out a short online assessment about your health and lifestyle
- Place an order for your preferred treatment option
- Your assessment will be checked to see if your order is right for you
- If approved, your order can then be posted to your preferred address or you can collect it from a local post office instead
- Ammonio methacrylate copolymer type B
- Calcium hydrogen phosphate dihydrate
- Lactose monohydrate
- Silica (colloidal anhydrous)
- Magnesium stearate
- Zava offers 2mg doses
- Although it’s safe to use if a doctor approves treatment for you, Circadin isn’t currently licensed for use in the UK for jet lag
Common side effects
Circadin is usually well-tolerated, which means it usually doesn’t cause side effects
Circadin is a prescription-only medication used to treat short-term, primary insomnia, and jet lag.
Circadin for jet lag: when you go on a long-haul flight, you cross different time zones, which means your normal sleep cycle gets interrupted. The time difference means it gets dark at a different time and your body needs time to adjust to this and make enough melatonin for you to get to sleep at night. To help you sleep properly during the night before you get adjusted to the new time zone, you can take Circadin, which will help your body get enough melatonin as you sleep.
Please note that jet lag is an ‘off-label’ use of Circadin.
All medications we offer are fully licensed within the UK. Some medications, like this one, we prescribe for conditions or circumstances that are outside of the licence (also known as ‘off-label’). Prescribing ‘off-label’ is common practice by healthcare professionals to ensure a medication can safely benefit as many patients as possible. This is always based on updated information and evidence since the product first became available.
Circadin for insomnia: primary insomnia means you have trouble sleeping properly, but there isn’t an obvious cause. Circadin is the only licensed melatonin treatment available in the UK. When you take Circadin, it matches the normal melatonin levels in your blood over the 8 to 10 hours you want to be asleep. So, Circadin can slowly top up your melatonin levels during the night, to help encourage normal sleep. Melatonin levels slowly drop as we get older, which can make it more difficult to get to sleep and stay asleep. So, Circadin is more likely to help people aged over 55.
You’ll need to take one 2mg Circadin tablet up to 1 or 2 hours before you want to go to bed. Swallow the tablet after you’ve eaten a meal, and with a glass of water. You should swallow it whole, and not crush or chew it. Also avoid drinking alcohol when you’re taking Circadin, because that can make it less effective.
When you order from Zava you’ll be given 10 tablets:
- Take one tablet on the first night in your new destination, just before you go to bed
- For the next 2 to 3 days, take one tablet if you think you’ll have trouble sleeping, until you’ve adjusted to the new time zone
- You shouldn’t feel any withdrawal symptoms or issues sleeping after you stop using Circadin
Yes, Circadin is available in the UK. It’s the only melatonin product licensed for use in the UK, but you must have a doctor’s assessment before you buy it.
Circadin is a prolonged-release tablet, so the active ingredient is slowly released in the body. Some other melatonin products, like quick-release tablets, are available on the internet, but aren’t licensed for insomnia in the UK. Circadin is safe to use for jet lag, but it also isn’t licensed in the UK for jet lag treatment.
Circadin is mostly for people over 55 who have insomnia, or for anyone who’s travelling across time zones and may get jet lag.
You shouldn’t take Circadin if you’re allergic to melatonin or any other Circadin ingredients.
Before you start taking Circadin, you should tell your doctor if you:
- have kidney or liver problems
- are intolerant to some sugars, like lactose
- have an autoimmune disease
- drive or use machinery, because Circadin can make you feel drowsy
Children under the age of 18 shouldn’t take Circadin, because the effects haven’t been tested properly for children. Circadin also shouldn’t be taken with alcohol, because it can reduce its effectiveness.
Circadin can interact with other medications, including the following:
- Quinolones and rifampicin
- Adrenergic agonists/antagonists
- Opiate agonists/antagonists
- Prostaglandin inhibitors
- Benzodiazepines and non-benzodiazepine hypnotics
You should also avoid smoking and drinking alcohol when you’re taking Circadin, because both of these can reduce how well it works.
Uncommon side effects of Circadin:
- Mood changes like restlessness, nervousness, and irritability
- Feeling weak
- High blood pressure
- Mouth ulcers
- Abdominal pain
- Night Sweats
- Pain in the extremities
- Abnormal liver function
- Weight gain
- Skin problems
- Abdominal pain and indigestion
- Changes in blood composition
If you get any of the following side effects while taking Circadin, you should get medical attention as soon as possible:
- Chest pain
- Palpitations (an irregular heart beat)
- Visual disturbances
- Feeling disorientated
- Increased bleeding or bruising
Dr Nicholas Antonakopoulos
Dr Nicholas Antonakopoulos graduated from the University of London in 2006. He did his postgraduate training in hospitals in the London area, and he trained for four years in Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery before completing his training in General practice in 2015.Meet our doctors
Last reviewed: 03 Apr 2019
Ming Chua, H. et al (2015). Dissolution of intact, divided and crushed Circadin tablets: prolonged vs. immediate release of melatonin. Pharmaceutics, Dec; 8: 1-11.
NICE (2013). Sleep disorders in children and young people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: melatonin. [online] Available at: https://www.nice.org.uk/advice/esuom2/ifp/chapter/about-melatonin [accessed 8th March 2019].
RAD Neurin Pharmaceuticals EEC Limited (2018). Circadin 2mg prolonged-release tablets: package leaflet: information for the patient. [online] Available at: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/files/pil.2809.pdf [accessed 7th March 2019].
Wade, A. G. et al (2007). Efficacy of prolonged release melatonin in insomnia patients aged 55-80 years: quality of sleep and next-day alertness outcomes. Current Medical Research and Opinions, Nov; 23: 2597-2605.