You should not hit your kids.

An end to physical punishment of children.

Should anyone, ever, hit their children? The weight of evidence from the psychological literature has leaned increasingly in the direction of โ€˜noโ€™, but recent research presents the strongest case yet. A recent review1 pulls the vast body of work in this area together and makes strong case against physical punishment – likening itโ€™s effects to straight-up physical abuse. The scale of this issue is staggering: in 2012, amongst 11,000 US families surveyed, 30% of mothers of pre-schoolers admitted hitting their children in the last week, and 80% said they believed in it as a parenting tool 2 . Large numbers of health care professionals also think physical punishment can be, in moderation, a useful (or at least harmless) parenting tool.
But how do these beliefs stand up in front of the evidence? And what other parenting options are there?
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