Does Melatonin Help with Hashimoto's?


I suffer from Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. I recently visited a Functional Medicine practitioner who suggested that I get more sleep, among other things. As it is now, I don't sleep very well. I'm not sure why this is the case. Perhaps it's because of the thyroid medication I take (I used to take Nature-Throid and then Armour and now Synthroid). Maybe it's not the correct dosage. I don't know. Anyway, because of this practitioner's suggestion, I have been looking into sleep aids. I usually take one Benadryl per night, but I'd really like to stop doing that. It was suggested to me that I take melatonin. Apparently, this is supposed to help correct irregular sleep patterns for those, well, for anyone, but especially for those who have autoimmune disorders. I would fall into that category.

So really, I have a few questions. First, I'd like to know if a lack of sleep can cause autoimmune disorders. Related to this, I'd like to know if a lack of sleep can inhibit those who may have an autoimmune disorder from getting better. I've been reading some articles on this topic and there does seem to be some correlation between a lack of sleep and the immune system being harmed. Here are some links to the articles I've been reading:

The second link leads to the Lupus Foundation of America's website. There's a very interesting quote in it by Daniel McNally, MD who states that those with chronic illnesses and who take sleep disrupting medications need to be especially aware of their sleep patterns. Since many of these people already have autoimmune issues, not getting enough sleep can compound their problems.

I also just read another article (that I'll link to below) that claims that melatonin may help with Hashimoto's, but that more research is needed. This supplement helps and reduces inflammation in those who have a variety of chronic diseases. The problem is, researchers don't quite know what's going on yet. Is the disruption of melatonin caused by stress and illness or does stress and illness cause a depletion or lack of production of melatonin in the body? Whatever is going on, something is messing with the melatonin is patient's bodies and more needs to be learned.

I ask you, do you have an autoimmune disorder? What is it? Are you sleeping well? If not, what have you done about it? Have you ever tried melatonin? If so, what were the results? As someone who is suffering from Hashimoto's, I'd love to learn more about what others are doing to manage their illnesses.