A new study performed by a team of child behavioral scientists has determined that nowadays parents are more likely to discipline instances of misbehavior using time-outs rather than spanking children.
The new study reveals that, over the past decades, parents in average and high-income households are more likely to use non-physical discipline rather than physical punishment in order to educate their children.
According to the study’s results, since 1988, the percentage of mothers using physical discipline in order to correct misbehavior has decreased from 46 to 26. Rebecca Ryan, the senior author of this new study, declared that since the beginning of the ‘90s, various social and psychological studies showed the parents that physical punishments could have a negative impact on children.
In addition, those studies revealed that children who were disciplined via spanking or similar methods experienced negative outcomes in later life such as drug and alcohol abuse, delinquency, and severe psychological issues.
The lead author of the study added that there is little evidence that spanking children is only a temporary solution. Furthermore, physical discipline will not help the child understand the source of misbehavior and to internalize the rules laid down by the parents.
In order to make these determinations, the team of scientists studied the results of four surveys performed from 1988 to 2011 by kindergarten caregivers.
According to their assessment, the percentage of mothers who admitted to spanking their children in the last week declined by 26 to 40. Subsequently, the scientists have also determined that the percentage of mothers who believe that physical punishment is a sound method of correcting misbehavior has decreased by 26 to 40 percent for the 1988 – 2011 timeframe.
Dr. Heidi Feldman, a specialist in child behavior who was not involved in the study, declared that there are many aspects that point out to the fact that physical punishment only serves to teach children that violence is acceptable means to enforce a point a view.
In addition, the child behavior added that non-physical discipline methods such as time-outs would really help the children understand why there are being punished and accepting the parents’ rules.
Feldman also added that we should look upon children as people without experience in the ways of the world, and that, in many instances, their misbehavior stems from their failure to control or contain their emotions.
Image source: Wikipedia