Finding parenting advice in an age of misinformation

Over the past few years and even more so throughout the past several months, relying on trustworthy, fact-based news sources has never been more important. With the ever-expanding amount of information available in what we read or see on social media, TV or the internet, we have to be careful about recognizing “fake news” content.

Parents receive a ton of information and advice from their pediatrician, family members, friends, neighbors and even total strangers. And with the overwhelming amount of social media “tips” and memes, online articles, parenting blogs, discussion boards, and more, it can be hard to find parenting advice online that is safe and effective. While someone running a parenting blog or a friend sharing a DIY baby formula recipe may have good intentions, their advice might not work for your child and could even be unsafe.

Parents looking for guidance should seek out resources that follow best practices and are grounded in pediatric expertise. Parenting advice should only be trusted if it’s given by experts whose guidance is backed by research and experience.

Here are a few early childhood resources we recommend:

Southwest Human Development: Yep, our very own website has articles on a variety of topics to help you navigate your parenting journey. We also provide the free Birth to Five Helpline to support you and your family (more on that below).

Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University: An organization focused on research-based implementation of policy and practice that helps children facing adversity.

First Things First: An organization that funds early education and health programs in Arizona to prepare young children to succeed in kindergarten and beyond.

Healthy Children: A parenting website run by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

ZERO TO THREE: A national nonprofit dedicated to giving children a strong start in life.

For free child development support, call our Birth to Five Helpline at 877-705-KIDS (5437) or download the Birth to Five Helpline app in the Apple App Store or on Google Play!

Call the Birth to Five Helpline to speak with one of our bilingual (English/Spanish) experts, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

All content in this article, including any advice or commentary from Southwest Human Development staff and/or others, should be considered an opinion and is provided for informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for medical or other professional advice, diagnosis or treatment.  Always seek the direct advice of your own trusted professional with any questions or concerns you may have regarding the child/ren in your care.  Southwest Human Development does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, products, procedures or other information that may be mentioned in this article.  You may contact Southwest Human Development’s Birth to Five Helpline at 1-877-705-KIDS (5437) to speak with one of our early childhood professionals for personalized assistance.  Birth to Five Helpline specialists are available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.