When you make sleep a priority life will really change for the better. -Dr. Whitney Roban

99: School Psychologist Turns Sleep Specialist and How to Solve Your Family’s Sleep with Dr. Whitney Roban

I’ve never had trouble sleeping…until this year. 🙁

It could be the bane of 2020, could be because I turned 40, or maybe because I was getting more sleep in quarantine, I wasn’t constantly overtired. Who knows?

The thing is…I know I’m not alone.

Sleep had already been becoming a holy grail for a lot of busy Americans of all ages, and the events and stress of 2020 haven’t helped.

I knew we needed Dr. Whitney Roban with her unique blend of experience as a school psychologist and now sleep specialist to help us help our families sleep better.

In today’s interview, you’ll learn:

  • How much sleep various ages actually need
  • Why sleep is important for body and mental health
  • What causes most people to struggle with healthy sleep
  • Dr. Roban’s top 5 tips for healthy sleep (and some are free!)

During the interview I committed to starting a better bedtime routine for myself…but I have to admit I haven’t done it yet! Best intentions, poor implementation.

So this week — I’m recommitting! I started this morning with a 10-minute walk outside within 30 minutes of waking to set my circadian rhythm for the day.

Now to end right…I’d love to crowdsource ideas — what do you do to wind down before bed? How do you deal if your spouse is ready for bed before you? (I always feel guilty that I take longer to wash my face etc. than my husband does, like I’m keeping him up if I do anything else!)

Looking forward to creating healthier sleep together!

Can’t see the video? View it here on YouTube.

No time to watch the whole video? Here are the notes!

Healthy Sleep Video Time Stamps

  • 0:15: We talk a lot about food on the Healthy Parenting Connector, but today we’re talking about healthy sleep which is equally important to our health!
  • 0:39: I’m speaking with Dr. Whitney Roban who is a sleep specialist.
  • 1:24: Dr. Whitney started off as a cognitive-behavioral psychologist. She shares how she transitioned to sleep consulting.

Am I Sleep Deprived?

  • 2:42: Adults and children alike struggle with sleep. Before the COVID pandemic, 40% of the population in the US had clinical sleep deprivation, now it’s up to 78%! 😮
  • 3:35: Dr. Whitney works with families, educates kids about healthy sleep, and consults in corporate settings. She tells us a bit more about what she does in each of these areas.

Kids want to learn about sleep. -Dr. Whitney Roban

  • 5:40: One of my silver linings during this shelter in place time has been that my kids have gotten really good sleep without an early morning wake up for school. It was really interesting to watch how my kids, especially my 15-year-old, responded.
  • 6:37: I’m terrible at getting enough sleep! It’s been an ongoing goal of mine to get more sleep. We talk about how many hours of sleep adults need, and a practical experiment to see how much sleep you need.

No matter what life throws at our kids, we need them to be resilient.

This free download will give you some practical and actionable steps to improve brain health and resilience.

3 WAYS TO BUILD BRAIN RESILIENCE

Tips for Healthy Sleep

  • 8:22: Going to bed at the same time is important as well as going to bed at the right time for your circadian rhythm.
  • 8:53: Teenager’s circadian rhythms shift a bit making them stay up a bit later (but not til 3am!) and need about 9 hours of sleep.
  • 10:26: We all know we should get enough sleep, but most of us don’t. Dr. Whitney shares some good motivation!

If it only affected our physical health that would be reason enough to get enough sleep. -Dr. Whitney Roban

There's nothing that healthy sleep can't have a positive effect on. -Dr. Whitney Roban

  • 12:16: Sleep deprivation is cumulative. You might not notice the effects on the first day after a night of short sleep, but after a couple of days it will catch up with you.
  • 14:32: Dr. Whitney shares her most practical tips for healthy sleep. They are: keep a consistent sleep schedule, us an appropriate bedtime routine, prepare your sleep environment, watch your daytime behaviors that affect sleep and prioritize sleep. Listen in here for more details!

We’re not light switches, we don’t click off the switch and just go to sleep. -Dr. Whiteny Roban

  • 17:04: Many of us don’t consider what we’re doing prior to going to sleep, but expect that we’ll just fall asleep with the flick of a switch.
  • 17:30: Everyone will have different elements of their bedtime routine, but no screens is an important aspect for everyone to add. Blue blocker glasses can help if you have to do computer work before bed.

When you make sleep a priority life will really change for the better. -Dr. Whitney Roban

  • 19:04: If this all seems overwhelming, pick one new thing to do tonight before bed. Then pick another one in a few days. Consistency is key, don’t just try something for a couple of days before dismissing it.
  • 19:32: Design your bedtime routine so that you’re looking forward to it and you enjoy bedtime!

Resources We Mentioned for Healthy Sleep

Dr. Whitney RobanDr. Whitney Roban is a Family, Educational, and Corporate Sleep Specialist, and the founder of Solve Our Sleep. She is also the author of the Devin & Evan book series, as well as a sought-after presenter on sleep to corporations and schools. Dr. Roban’s mission is to provide the sleep education and support parents, teachers, students, and employees need to succeed. Dr. Roban’s unique and invaluable education and training as a Clinical Psychologist paved the way to her success as a leading sleep expert.

Healthy sleep for the whole family

What You Should Do Next:

1. Subscribe to The Healthy Parenting Connector

Katie Kimball

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About Katie Kimball

Katie Kimball, CSME, creator of Kids Cook Real Food and CEO of Kitchen Stewardship, LLC, is passionate about connecting families around healthy food. As a trusted educator and author of 8 real food cookbooks, she’s been featured on media outlets like ABC, NBC and First for Women magazine and contributes periodically on the FOX Network.

Since 2009, busy moms have looked to Katie as a trusted authority and advocate for children’s health, and she often partners with health experts and medical practitioners to stay on the cutting edge. In 2016 she created the Wall Street Journal recommended best online kids cooking course, Kids Cook Real Food, helping thousands of families around the world learn to cook. She is actively masterminding the Kids’ Meal Revolution, with a goal of every child learning to cook.

A mom of 4 kids from Michigan, she is also a Certified Stress Mastery Educator, member of the American Institute of Stress and trained speaker through Bo Eason’s Personal Story Power.

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