Vitafusion SleepWell is a non-prescription sleep aid that’s sold online and in some stores in the United States. There are different versions of it – the one I tried contains melatonin, passionflower, chamomile, and lemon balm.
Interestingly, melatonin doesn’t require a prescription in the US as it’s considered a supplement rather than a medicine. That’s a key reason you’re unlikely to find it in Europe.
Melatonin is different from many sleep aids in that it’s thought to be better for regulating your body clock in situations like jet lag or shift work. It’s not a one-size-fits-all sleep aid for anyone with insomnia.
I decided to test it for a week to see if it would help fix my out-of-whack sleep pattern, which had been disrupted by traveling.
In this review, I’ll talk about my experience using SleepWell for the week. And I’ll also discuss some useful points if you’re thinking of trying it yourself.
I took SleepWell the night I got back from a trip abroad. My sleep pattern was around three hours in advance of what it usually would be. So I hoped the melatonin would help shift my bedtime earlier.
The label just says to take them ‘prior to sleep event’. I interpreted that as 30 minutes before, and on an empty stomach.
I took two gummies, which is the suggested dosage. They have a sweet flavor and are very easy to chew – one reason why it’s good to keep them out of young children’s reach!
I’ve had comments from readers before about children who’ve found a bottle of melatonin gummies and eaten several.
A noticeable sedative effect
I went to bed and read a book straight after taking the gummies, which is what I always do so I can keep an eye out for any noticeable sedative effect.
I wasn’t expecting to sense anything physical, but I did. In about 45 minutes, I started to feel quite drowsy. I was admittedly tired anyway, but I couldn’t read any longer and turned the light off.
Disorientated in the night
I remember waking up a few hours later and going to the bathroom. I was still half asleep and kind of stumbled out of the bedroom in a daze.
I went back to sleep almost instantly and then woke up seven and a half hours after first falling asleep. That’s the ideal amount of sleep for me, so I was quite happy about that.
Some grogginess in the morning
When I woke up, it felt like I was waking from a very deep sleep. I usually wake up feeling instantly alert, but it took me around 30 minutes to shake the groggy feeling.
It wasn’t as bad as the grogginess of antihistamine sleep aids like Nytol or Sominex, however, which is stronger and tends to linger for much longer.
No other side effects
Other than a briefly cloudy head and heavy eyes, I didn’t notice any other side effects. I didn’t remember any vivid dreams either, which is often reported with melatonin.
The rest of the week
I took the same dosage of SleepWell every night for the rest of the week. On five of those nights, I got between seven and eight hours’ sleep, which is great. On two nights, it dropped back down to six and a half, which is still ok for me.
Interestingly, I had the same effects as the first night all week. Disorientated when waking in the night to go to the bathroom and a brief heavy feeling upon waking.
Sleep tracker data
I don’t usually report what my sleep trackers say about my sleep stages when I review sleep aids, as they are never 100% reliable.
However, there was a strong pattern this week which interested me. Every day, without exception, my total REM sleep jumped significantly.
I actually felt on fine form all week during the day, and was able to perform consistently well in my sports. So perhaps there was an increase in REM sleep, and it was doing me good.
Conclusion for the week
I feel that the SleepWell gummies worked well for me. I got a good amount of sleep all week, and my sleep schedule adjusted to the local time quickly. I felt good during the day, could work and exercise well, and the side effects were minimal.
My only concern was the disorientated feeling when waking in the night. On reflection, I think I stumbled to the bathroom on a couple of occasions with worse coordination than I should have.
I’d also be very wary of keeping them anywhere children can get to them. They seem to glow attractively in light, look like sweets, and definitely taste like them.
In the photo below you can see how the gummies glow and look like sweets:
The label lists the active ingredients per serving (two gummies) as:
- Melatonin 3 mg
- Passionflower extract 4.25 mg
- Chamomile flower extract 4.25 mg
- Lemon balm leaf extract 4 mg
Additional non-active ingredients listed are:
- Citric acid
- Color (annatto extract)
- Fractionated coconut oil (with beeswax and/or carnauba wax)
- Lactic acid
- Natural flavors
Note that the gummies are gluten-free, but do contain tree nuts.
The suggested dosage is two gummies prior to sleep. I found that taking them 30 to 60 minutes before bed worked well.
Who is Vitafusion SleepWell intended for?
Since Vitafusion SleepWell falls into the category of food supplements, it doesn’t require the same rigid testing and regulation that medicines do to be approved for use for specific conditions.
The label says the melatonin in the gummies provides:
- Help with jet lag
- Sleep cycle regulation
- Awake refreshed
Bu then the label also states:
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, cure or prevent any disease…this product is not intended to treat insomnia or other sleep disorders.
That’s a common statement you’ll find with many over the counter sleep aids that contain melatonin and/or herbal ingredients.
Precautions and side effects
The label doesn’t have much information about possible side effects and interactions.
It has the following advice:
- Not for children under 16
- Don’t exceed the suggested dose
- Don’t take when driving, operating machinery or conducting any activity requiring alertness (it causes drowsiness of course)
- You should take to a medical practitioner before using it if you are pregnant or nursing, taking any other medication or have any medical condition
As it’s a supplement and not a medicine, there’s no requirement to list possible side effects. However, melatonin can cause many different side effects, even though most people tolerate it well.
My advice is to research and understand the risks before you decide to take this, or any other melatonin product.
What others say
At the time of writing, Vitafusion SleepWell gets good customer reviews on various online stores. At Amazon.com it has a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars, from 300+ customers.
There are a low number of 1 and 2 star reviews, which is quite unusual for sleep aids and speaks well for the product.
140+ customers on Costco.com give it an average of 4.4 out of 5.
Have you tried the SleepWell gummies? Let me know your experience in the comments below.
Hi Ethan Green I am having chronic sleepless nights for many years already n taking Valium with low doses like 2.5 mg each time it lasts me about 2.5 to 3 hours.
I have stopped taking for a while to try going to sleep but failed to stay asleep. I can go to sleep before n sleep about 3 hours before waking up but without any aid but going back to sleep is a problem. Now wake up every half hour to pee like 6 times from 11 pm to 1 am on most nights. Try going back to sleep but failed so taking 2.5 mg at about 2 am n woke up about 4-5 am in d morning.
The reason not taking going to bed is bcos I do not want to be totally dependent on the medication which is unhealthy.
I have tried liquid melatonin before but it leaves me groggy and also unable to sleep the whole night before starting with a sleeping pill and there is no sign of hand over.
Can vitafusion help me to stay asleep?
Unfortunately, there is no way for me to predict whether vitafusion will be any better for you. Have you been to a doctor about the urination frequency? I imagine that might be a reason you’re not staying asleep, and perhaps there is an underlying physical cause that can be checked?
Where do I buy this product?
I bought mine in a pharmacy in the US. You can also get it online, sites like Amazon.
I purchased 2 different kinds of melatonin dummies. Blackberry 5 MG and strawberry 10 mg. The strawberry came in a container with icepacks saying perishable, however, the blackberry didn’t. Are these melatonin gummies supposed to be refrigerated???
Thanks for your comment. I don’t recall any instructions to keep them refrigerated. Where did you order them from?
Thanks for the info. I ‘ve been having sleep problems for a long time. If I don’t take a pill I stay wide awake for hours! It’s unbearable! Now I’ve started taking Quetiapine but I’d like to take something healthier and more natural. Based on herbs.
I’ve tried Bach drops but they don’t work at all with me.
Should I try taking Vitafusion sleep well?
It’s not for me to advise on whether you should or shouldn’t take a sleep aid – sorry! I don’t think these sleep aids are replacements for Quetiapine though, so I would discuss this with your prescribing doctor.
I find these work well but I am very groggy for a couple of hours in the mornings if I take two. I find that just taking one does have an effect – I think I surface more in the night but do go back to sleep quickly. Also they take a while to work so I am trying taking them a bit earlier – at least an hour before I want to sleep – which means the grogginess wears off quicker. I have them for a trip I’m taking later in the year and am just trying them out at the minute to see how they work and test out my reactions.
Thanks for sharing your experience. I think it’s fine to take a lower dosage if it works well for you too, and probably a good thing at that. And getting the timing right can definitely help with morning grogginess – and one reason why it’s advisable not to take more in the night if you feel they aren’t working.
I will take them when I have trouble falling asleep, but have trouble shaking that disoriented feeling. I maybe tired later in the day as well after taking them. My dog found some and ate about 5 or 10. They were up on a shelf but he found them anyway. He hid his head from the light and stayed under a piece of furniture. He was fine by the next morning, but I always wondered what the effect was on dogs.
Thanks for your comment. Poor dog! I’m glad he was ok the next morning. How long does the disorientated feeling last for you usually?