Spanking is harmful to kids: study

Suggests eliminating or limiting fear and violence in a parent-child relationship Parents should not spank their children, the American Academy of Pediatrics said in a strongly-worded policy statement. The group, which represents about 67,000 doctors, also recommended that paediatricians advise parents against the use of spanking and said to avoid using nonphysical punishment that is humiliating, scary or threatening. “One of the most important relationships we all have is the relationship between ourselves and our parents, and it makes sense to eliminate or limit fear and violence in that loving relationship,” said Dr. Robert D. Sege, one of the authors of the statement. The academy’s new policy will be published in the December issue of the journal Pediatrics . A 2016 analysis of multiple studies, for example, found that children do not benefit from spanking. “Certainly you can get a child’s attention, but it’s not an effective strategy to teach right from wrong,” Mr. Sege said. Recent studies have also shown that corporal punishment is associated with increased aggression and makes it more likely that children will be defiant in the future. There are potential ramifications to the brain as well: a 2009 study of 23 young adults who had repeated exposure to harsh corporal punishment found reduced grey matter volume in an area of the prefrontal cortex that is believed to play a crucial role in social cognition. Those exposed to harsh punishment also had a lower performance IQ than that of a control group.NY Times

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