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Study: Spanking could be more damaging than thought
(CBS) - A new study shows spanking your child can be more damaging to them than first thought.
Studies have shown that spanking can lead to behavior problems. Now researchers find it may also hurt a child's cognitive development.
"We found that children who were spanked by fathers at high levels showed decreases in verbal capacity by age 9," said Dr. Michael Mackenzie of Columbia University.
Children who were spanked at least twice a week by their mother at age 3 or 5 were also more likely to break rules and act aggressively.
Scientists at Columbia Unversity School of Social Work looked at nearly 2,000 children from 20 large cities in the us and found spanking is still very common.
"Over 50 percent of parents by age five were spanking their children and that was only looking at spanking in the past month," said Dr. Mackenzie.
Wendy Bradford has three children under five and is trying hard not to spank.
"I'm stuck with three kids in a small apartment who have been acting out for a few hours and that's the last straw of the day and it's not ok," said Bradford.
Most pediatricians agree there are better ways to discipline.
Wendy is trying a reward system with marbles.
Doctors also suggest parents take a time out themselves to think of the most effective punishment before spanking.
Critics say one issue with the study is that researchers did not define spanking which can range from a swatting to more forceful hitting.