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Spanking in developing countries does more harm than good

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Do you have fond memories of being canned or spanked as a child? Likely not! In fact, spanking may be more harmful to children on a more global scale than previously known, according to a study conducted using UNICEF data.

Spanking is one of the most common forms of child discipline used by parents and authority figures like school teachers worldwide. Parents and caregivers from 62 countries were included in the University of Michigan study. One-third of the respondents indicated they believed physical punishment is necessary to bring up, raise or educate a child properly.

Among the children studied, 43 percent had been spanked, or resided in a home where another child was spanked. They found children’s mental health was negatively affected whether a child was spanked or was an observer. “It appears that spanking may do more harm than good,” mentioned the lead author of this study. He noted, “reductions in corporal punishment might do a great deal to reduce the burden of children’s mental health and improve child development outcomes globally.”

What’s your take on this? Perhaps this is a good dinner table discussion with your family and friends.

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