To examine the relationship of corporal punishment with children’s behavior problems while accounting for neighborhood context and while using stronger statistical methods than previous literature in this area, and to examine whether different levels of corporal punishment have different effects in different neighborhood contexts.
Longitudinal cohort study.
1943 mother-child pairs from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth.
Main Outcome Measure
Internalizing and externalizing behavior problem scales of the Behavior Problems Index.
Results and Conclusions
Parental use of corporal punishment was associated with a 0.71 increase (P<.05) in children’s externalizing behavior problems even when several parenting behaviors, neighborhood quality, and all time-invariant variables were accounted for. The association of corporal punishment and children’s externalizing behavior problems was not dependent on neighborhood context. The research found no discernible relationship between corporal punishment and internalizing behavior problems.