Family & Social Child Developement
Disciplining Your Child Without Spanking
Physical punishment, i.e. caning or spanking your child, may not be most effective when it comes to discipline.
Although physical punishment, i.e. caning or spanking your child, increases short-term compliance, many research studies do show negative outcomes in children in the long-term such as aggressive behaviours, lower quality relationships, and poorer mental health in childhood and adulthood.
According to a recent international study spanning several continents including Asia, explanations of physical punishment being ‘just’ and ‘fair’ and the use of less severe forms of physical punishment (e.g. slapping on hand) do not lessen the negative impact it has on children’s outcomes.
On the other hand, consistent use of positive parenting methods (e.g. planned ignoring of negative behaviours, providing praise and reward for positive behaviours) have shown effectiveness in shaping children’s behaviour. Additionally, using other-oriented reasoning where children learn to understand effects of their behaviour on others increases their empathy and promotes pro-social behaviours.
More importantly, parents are encouraged to spend time in taking the perspective of their children in order to better identify reasons for their misbehaviour. This in turn helps parents to choose wisely on interventions that encourage children’s willing compliance.
Ms Joanne Especkerman, Psychologist at the Psychology Service, KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH), a member of the SingHealth group, said parents are often unsure of various alternative methods of discipline. Here are some alternatives:
Disclaimer: All HealthXchange articles are intended for general information only and provided on the understanding that no surgical and medical advice or recommendation is being rendered. Please do not disregard the professional advice of your physician.
As Singapore's first interactive health and lifestyle resource portal developed by SingHealth, HealthXchange.sg provides comprehensive, relevant and trusted health and medical information for Singaporeans and the Asian community.
Loved this article?
Still got questions?
We're here to help! Book a FREE consultation with our Experts
Join 1 Million+ families who
love KinderPass 🎉
Get a personalized daily curriculum of over 1200 skill building activities
Book live consultations with child experts
Track growth, development milestones and identify red flags
Subscribe to our newsletter
Receive weekly advice and guidance on child development in your inbox