The Des Plaines authorities recently arrested three day care teachers and charged them with endangering a child’s life. According to arrest warrants, the day care employees gave several two-year-old children gummy bears laced with melatonin to help them fall asleep faster. None of the children showed any sign of side-effects associated with the supplement.
Day Care Teachers Didn’t Have Parents Consent to Administer Melatonin
According to the Des Plaines authorities, the events that led to the arrest of three day care teachers occurred at the Kiddie Junction management center. The deeds were uncovered by another teacher who alerted the authorities.
Subsequent investigation revealed that 32-year-old Kristen Lauletta, 19-year-old Jessica Heyse, and 25-year-old Ashley Helfenbein, all three of them Kiddie Junction employees, have been giving toddlers gummy bears laced with melatonin, a sleep supplement.
After being confronted by the authorities, the day care teachers declared that there wasn’t anything wrong with giving melatonin to children, as it is an over-the-counter supplement. Furthermore, the teachers decided to give the laced gummy bears to the children despite not having their parents’ permission.
The authorities alerted all parents, who took their children to the local hospital. Fortunately, none of the children who ate gummy bears experienced side-effects, although one of the parents declared that his toddler used to be groggier after day school.
Although melatonin is generally considered safe for use, some neurologists claim that melatonin abuse can interfere with the normal sleep-wake cycle. Another side-effect of using melatonin supplements in order to fall asleep is recurring nightmares.
The situation could have taken a more dramatic turn if one or more of the toddlers were allergic to the substance.
All three day care teachers were arrested and charged with endangering a child’s health. They are due to appear in court on the 14th of April.
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