What spanking is!

Difference between spanking and discipline

Why is Spanking bad

The reasons

Deficiency of knowledge in parents


Domestic problems

Effects on the child


Some advantages

Strategies instead of spanking

Reasons behind using other ways to discipline your child


Spanking children is a debatable issue. It is a serious problem and its solution is required on urgent bases. Due to this issue many families’ serenity has been destroyed that has brought about many social and mental issues which further escalate emotional and psychological problems. In this article, let us discuss the issue of spanking children in details.

What spanking is!

Spanking is considered to be the synonym of punishment. It is a kind of physical punishment in which parent strikes or hits on child’s sitter or buttock using her hand repeatedly but generally, slapping and uttering harsh words are also included in it.

Spanking is a kind of punishment and it is broadly used method of reprimanding in many countries especially the United States.  Parents start spanking during the preschool years and usually stop by the time children are 8-10 years of age. 

Parents generally consider spanking to be effective and necessary for disciplining their children.  However, professionals and legal scholars have debated for years on the risks of spanking.

Latest research provides strong evidence that spanking and other forms of physical punishment are harmful for children in the long run. A key dispute in care of spanking results in lack of discipline. The main argument regarding to spanking is that 80% studies of spanking show that the more physical punishment a child experiences, the worse the behavior of the child results.     

Bodily punishment is defined as the use of physical force with the intention of causing a child to experience pain but not injury for the purpose of correction or control of the child’s behavior. Generally, spanking and slapping that do not result in significant physical injury are considered acceptable corporal punishment while behaviors that cause harm to the child are considered child abuse.

Factors associated with spanking

Factors associated with parents’ use of corporal punishment understanding the reasons why parents use physical punishment is necessary to determine effective interventions. 

Research has identified both pre-existing factors and immediate, situational factors that contribute to the use of corporal punishment. 

Pre-existing factors

Pre-existing factors include characteristics of the parent, characteristics of the child, the parent-child relationship, and characteristics of the community. 

Situational factors

Situational factors are those which occur within the immediate timeframe of the misbehavior. Parenting Characteristics and Factors that increase the probability that parents will use physical punishment include their culture, knowledge and attitudes towards spanking, income, and education.

Difference between spanking and discipline

Mostly people think that discipline is the synonym of spanking but there is major difference as spanking is kind of physical punishment while discipline is principle of teaching that keeps the things in proper order. Discipline keeps everyone in limit and it is a set of rules. 

Why is spanking bad?

Spanking is bad because it has negative impact on child’s behavior and attitude. As a parent, if you keep on spanking your child over petty matters, it may have wrong effect on her. Her belief on her parents is dispersed.

The reasons behind spanking

The main root causes of spanking are as under:

Deficiency of knowledge regarding parenting

Most of the parents, especially new parents have the lack of knowledge regarding good parenting or how to rear and handle the child in a smooth and smart way.

When they fail to understand the reason behind their child’s wrong behavior, they use punishment tool to rectify their child which creates gap between parents and the child. The child considers that her parents have no love for her and sometimes it happens that she considers them her foes.

As a sensible parent, it is your duty to obtain abundance of knowledge regarding rearing the children by having conversation with successful parents and attending training sessions. This will help you understand the feelings of your child and handle the problems she is facing, without any spanking.


It has been observed that the parents, who are poverty-stricken, work day and night in order to earn livelihood to rear their children. As a result, they have little time to spend with their children. So, they fail to understand the emotions of their children. When the children misbehave with their parents, the parents spank them which put precarious effects on their children.

Poverty ( Spanking )

Being parent, if you are poor and fail to understand the feelings of your child, you should not allow yourself spanking your child. Instead, you should show love and affection to her. Try to make her know that you love her but if there is some hatred, it is not with her but with her mistaken behavior.

Domestic problems

Some parents face a lot of domestic problems and they become problematic. So, being in problems, they are unable to pay full attention to their children which causes relation gap among parents and children. It is not easy for such parents to train their children how to lead a successful life.

Dear parent, if you have any domestic problem, you should try to get rid of that problem as early as possible so that its effect may not hover on your child. It is your duty to keep your child away from domestic issues. Further, you are supposed to provide her peaceful and loving atmosphere; otherwise, it will not be possible for you to handle your child smoothly.

Saving your child from domestic issues will bring positive changes and advancement in your child.

Effects of spanking on the child

It has been observed that most of the parents, who spank, believe that spanking will teach their child sense of right and wrong. But the result is contrary to it,as recent researches recommend that spanking should be discouraged as a discipline strategy. It has been observed that effect of spanking is very bad on the child.

Following consequences can take place if you spank your child:Distance is created between the parent and the child if the parent punishes her child.

Negative impact on behavior of your child is possible if you keep on spanking her.

Many dangerous diseases may attack on your child or on yourself. Tension is dangerous of all that could result heart attack or suicide.

A number of children have reported the feelings of fear, anger, and sadness after being spanked. It can be very frightening and confusing for a child to be hit by a parent whom they love and depend on.

If parent, after spanking, wants to explain the reason behind spanking, the child will never listen to her attentively. Rather, she would ignore her parent.

Spanking conveys the wrong message. So, it is not easy for children to learn through spanking.

This increases aggression in children. It is true that more aggressive children tend to be spanked, but even when researchers took baseline aggression levels into account, they found that spanking increases aggression level of children. Spanking increases child abuse. In some cases, it is not possible to discriminate between child abuse and spanking.

It is problematic if parents use spanking when they are upset, emotional, and frustrated as it is more likely that spanking will cross the line into unintentional child abuse. 

It generates negative effects on cultures.

Human rights

  • No doubt, spanking is also discouraged by professionals and community organizations. Very prominent administrations have begun to avoid spanking as a parenting practice. Many countries and international human rights also discourage spanking.
  • All over the world, spanking is being discouraged. The United Nations have stated that spanking is considered a form of violence and it should be barred in all environments.
  • Other international human rights organizations have made parallel rights as well. In many countries, spanking has been banned because it is considered a crime.

Disadvantages of spanking

There are many disadvantages of spanking the child. It mars the talent of the child because she starts losing her hope over her parents. It creates tension not only in child but also in parents. Child learns from mistakes. So, parents should ignore the mistakes and should encourage their child that she is doing very well and they can help her learning from mistakes.

Normally, it has a lot of disadvantages and our examining of data from a number of independent studies of the spanking in order to determine overall trends reveal that it is linked with several unintended outcomes:

Followings are the disadvantages:

•It causes mental health problems.

•This creates difficulty in parents’ relationships with their child.

•It lowers self-esteem.

•Poorer academic performance is the result of spanking.

•It may cause more harmful behavior

•Use of corporal punishment with your child generates Cycle of violence from generation to generation.

•This increases the risk of a range of negative outcomes, including mental health problems, behavior problems, and lower mental ability.

•Spanking has same negative outcomes for children across cultures and communities.

This has been linked with the same negative outcomes for children regardless of how warm parents are with their children. So, there is strong evidence that spanking and physical punishment are harmful to children.

Some Advantages of spanking

In some cases it has been observed that spanking is also beneficial for the child. Many families of different countries believe on spanking and they consider it good thing for the betterment of the child.

They claim the following advantages of spanking:

• It works!

• Parents don’t believe that there are disadvantages of spanking.

• They consider it a standard and essential part of parenting in their community.

•Some of them say that spanking is not striking – and undoubtedly not exploitation.

•They claim that parents seldom spank and are otherwise heartfelt and receptive with their child.

As a parent, you should focus on the message and consider it as a corrective approach.

Strategies instead of spanking

Parents should use following strategies instead of spanking:

  • Being parent, you can use time-outs. Time out means that you give some time to fulfill a task and if it is not fulfilled in time, you take away some facility bestowed to your child for some time.
  • Research shows that time-outs have similar results as spanking when child is asked to obey various parental requests. Nevertheless, time-outs are a much better penalty because parents avoid sending mixed messages to their child and stop other negative consequences.
  • By communicating, you can find the reasons why something is right or wrong for your child. It is imperative that child comprehends the motives why something is right or wrong. For doing so, parents and caregivers should have chats with their child to explain the reasons why the child should have acted differently, why their actions may hurt her or others, and what she should have done.
  • Even if only time-outs were used, with no discussion, children would not learn the reasons why something was right or wrong.
  • As sensible parent, you should take time to calm down before you discipline your child. As beforehand discussed, spanking can lead to child abuse if parents are not cautious. If you feel frustrated or at the risk of spanking, you should take some time to calm down before chastising your child. This method will help your child adopt your messages more excellently because the child will be able to focus on the message instead of feeling in persistent fear of how you may react.               

In a nutshell 

Although spanking is still a common penal practice in the U.S., researches demonstrate that spanking is unsuccessful and harmful to children. Furthermore, prominent professional, religious and human rights organizations support and promote the removal of spanking practices. Therefore, you, as parent, are strongly encouraged to eradicate spanking as a disciplinary strategy and instead, implement alternative strategies which have been discussed in detail, to discipline your child.