Don’t believe everything you read on the internet, especially when it comes to children's health information and parenting advice. That’s what I tell my patients and their parents.
Below I share some of my favorite websites. They’re excellent sources of information about children of all ages--from prenatal information all the way through the teen years. These sites have information about health, development, nutrition, education and so much more.
Health & Development Information
The first one I want to share is the public education site of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), www.healthychildren.org. This site has health information organized by age, so it's very user friendly and easy to find what you are seeking. Bonus: You can trust that the information is provided by well-trained, board-certified pediatricians.
A second website I recommend is www.brightfutures.aap.org. Here, the AAP and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services have partnered together to develop a site filled with health promotion and preventive care information.
Activities and Education Ideas
To find age-appropriate ideas for child development, activities, suggestions for helping children develop healthy habits and skills, etc. I like the Parents magazine website www.parents.com/kids/development. For literacy skills, games and other age-appropriate activity ideas, try www.pbs.org/parents. This page offers a variety of resources to help develop your children's brain, knowledge and social skills.
Parents who are looking for evidence based, well-written and easy to understand information about vaccines will like this website from the Centers for Disease Control, www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents.
Special Books for Parents of Newborns and Young Children
No, these aren’t online resources, but because the time from birth to five years old represents the period of greatest and fastest development, there can be many questions, and books are handy to have around.
To help address your questions from the first day home to the first day of kindergarten, try the two books below. They are both written by pediatricians, and the books are published by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
- Heading Home with Your Newborn, by Laura A. Jana, MD
- Caring for Your Baby and Young Child Birth to Age 5, by AAP; Steven P. Shelov, editor