Q. Will 5-HTPn help to increase serotonin level? Suffering from sleeping problem, depression and anxieties.

Answered by
Dr. Ashish Khandelwal
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 14, 2014 and last reviewed on: Oct 09, 2018

Dear Doctor,

I have a problem of sleeping at a scheduled time. I always sleep in a different time and it is getting delayed every day, like a cycle. For example: If today I sleep at 9:00 pm, in few days I will be sleeping at 10:00 pm. And in a few weeks, I would sleep at 4:00 AM. I also have depression and different forms of anxieties.I did a blood test for sertonin in blood. The result was 65.0 ng/mL. Normal range is 151-186. Does this test have anything to do with my anxiety and sleeping problem?

What should I do about it? Age:29 years, Gender: male, Height:178cm, Weight:60kg, Medications: I take only 1 multivitamin every day.


Hi, Welcome to There is relation between low serotonin level and depression and anxiety.

What is more important is how significant symptoms of these problem you have, how much are you distressed from these and whether they cause interference in your daily life (socio occupational decline). If you have these symptoms from last few months then I would like you to suggest that you should start medications for these. which include anti depressants and anti anxiety medications.

Your sleep disturbance might be due to depression and anxiety as well. This would also improve with medications. Also there is psychotherapy (talking therapy) for these problems, in which we need to discuss your stress factors and your coping skills for these. For further discussion, you can either book for an online therapy or you can further ask any questions.

Hi Doctor, I am already taking psychotherapy every week since a few months. I do no't want to take antidepressants, and my psychotherapist agrees.

How can I increase serotonin level? I read about 5-HTPn. Is that a good choice? If yes, then how much and how long should I take it. If no, then what should I take?


Hi, It is fine, if you do not want to start typical antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications. For you, there are two things you can try:

  • One is yes, the 5-HTPn and,
  • The other is SAMe(S-Adenosyl methionine).

These both are dietary supplements and also work well as antidepressants.

  • 5-HTPn dose starts with 50 mg at 9 AM for a week. 50mg twice for a week then 100mg twice daily and then continue the dose and wait and see for response; may be after a month or so.
  • SAMe(S-Adenosyl methionine) 200mg twice a day for 4 weeks.

"I would suggest you to go with 5HTPn"

I would also suggest you to take Vitamin B12 and Folic Acid supplements along with these. 

I would suggest you, not to think too much about your sleep.

Follow proper sleep hygiene.


  • Medicines are to be continued only if there are no side effects found during the course.
  • Do not continue the medications beyond the duration of prescription without asking doctor.

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