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Science Speaks: The Long-Term Negative Effects of Spanking

Science Speaks: The Long-Term Negative Effects of Spanking

There are some who believe that a firm hand is the only way to provide order in a household. The notion that spanking can steer children in the right direction has been passed down from generation to generation. Although the topic is debated strongly among parents and teachers alike, there is a certain level of skepticism that pervades the idea that physical correction results in a child who is polite and obediently adheres to the rules.

The skepticism that drives many to the conclusion that there has to be a better alternative to corporeal punishment is now backed by science.

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Science shows, in fact, that though spanking can end negative behavior in the short term, the long-term effects do more damage and are less effective than alternative options.

science of spanking
    Graphic via Upworthy

    So just what are the effects of spanking? Can they have a long-term impact on how a child grows into an adult?

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    The effects during childhood are varied but definitively negative and often lead right into adulthood. Spanking has been proven to:

    • Decrease brain function. Some studies have linked spanking to increased memory loss and a lower IQ on test results.
    • Lead to higher depression and anxiety rates in adulthood.
    • Increase the likelihood that they, too, will punish their own children in this way.
    • Increase a child’s aggression level now and later down the road.

    Some parents even use corporeal punishment as a fix to poor grades, instead of actively getting involved in their children’s education. This backfires, however, as spanking directly relates to the active role of the parent, as well as their means for discipline.

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    Alternatives to Corporeal Punishment

    When in the moment of necessary discipline, it can be difficult to know how and when you should apply an alternative technique. The following list shows other punishment options that are not physically harmful.

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    • Time-out. A quiet place for your child to sit and calm down is commonly known as a time-out. It gives the child space to regroup his or her thoughts and feelings, and shows that mom or dad will not give positive attention to negative behavior. It’s often recommended that time-out be as long as one minute for each year of the child’s age.
    • Taking away certain privileges. This alternative allows the consequence of the behavior to be felt when a privilege is removed for the decided-upon duration. This would generally be a favorite toy or novelty item.
    • Discussion. For older children, simply having a discussion about why the behavior is not acceptable can do wonders for preventing the same poor behavior from happening in the future. Younger children tend to not benefit from this alternative as their reasoning skills haven’t quite been fully developed.

    Overall, the research is astoundingly positive that spanking and corporeal punishment are of little benefit to the recipient. In fact, using an alternative method for discipline can result in a child who is more likely to follow rules than if spanking alone were used.

    Featured photo credit: Upworthy via upworthy.com

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    Kayla Matthews

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    Last Updated on January 11, 2021

    11 Hidden Benefits of Using Oil Diffusers

    11 Hidden Benefits of Using Oil Diffusers

    Affordable, relaxing, and healthy, oil diffusers are gaining popularity with people everywhere due to their extensive benefits. Oil diffusers work through the simple process of oil diffusion, which uses heat to turn oil into a vapor that is then spread around a living space. Diffused oil can have several relaxation and health-related benefits, including safe scent-dispersion, mosquito and mold defense, stress relief, and more!

    Read on for 11 hidden benefits of using oil diffusers.

    1. Safe Scents That Make Sense

    Unlike candles or air fresheners, oil diffusers release cleansing molecules into your air that work to purify it, not overload it with unhealthy chemicals. Electronic diffusers also do not pose the fire risk that candles do. Plus, they contain the added feature of interchangeability, which means you change oil types for different scents and health benefits.

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    2. Stress Relief

    Several lab studies have confirmed that diffusing essential oils like lavender have been shown to reduce stress and help relieve anxiety in medical patients. Preliminary studies have also shown that oil diffusers can help alleviate symptoms of depression.

    3. Improved Sleep

    Diffused oil has relaxing properties that can help people of all ages fall asleep quicker and sleep more soundly. Electronic diffusers not only have the option to mix and match different oil blends (Try a lavender, Bulgarian rose, and Roman chamomile blend to help with insomnia), they also run at a gentle hum that helps relax an agitated mind. Many also come with an auto shut-off feature to help conserve oils once you have fallen asleep.

    4. Appetite Control

    Much like gum, oil diffusers can help stimulate the senses in a way that works to curb appetite. New research has shown that diffused peppermint oil can help curb appetite by inducing a satiety response within the body. Diffused peppermint oil has also been shown to increase energy.

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    5. Bacteria and Mold Killing

    When essential oils are diffused in the air, they break down free radicals that contribute to the growth of harmful bacteria. Eucalyptus, thyme, and tea tree oils are especially good for this purpose. Diffused oil is also highly effective when it comes to combating fungal yeast threats, as the oil help makes the air inhospitable for yeasts such as mold. Pine and red thyme essential oils are best for combating mold.

    6. Decongestion and Mucus Control

    Ever tried Vick’s Vapo-Rub? Its decongesting powers come from active ingredients made from the eucalyptus tree. In principle, oil diffusers work the same way as Vapo-Rub, except they diffuse their decongesting vapor all around the room, not just on your chest or neck. Oil diffusers have been known to cure pneumonia in lab mice.

    7. Mosquito Repellant

    Nobody likes mosquitoes — but when the trade-off means using repellants full of DEET, a toxic chemical that can be especially harmful to children, mosquito control can often seem like a lose-lose. However, scientists have shown that oil diffusers can be used as a safe and highly effective mosquito repellant. Studies have shown that a diffused oil mixture containing clove essential oil and lemongrass essential oil repelled one type of Zika-carrying mosquito, the Aedes aegypti mosquito, at a rate of 100%.

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    8. Pain Relief

    While applying oils directly to areas of your body may be the most effective way to alleviate pain, diffusing essential oils can also be an effective means of pain relief. When we inhale healthy essential oils, they enter our blood stream and can help internally relieve persistent pain from headaches, overworked muscles, and sore joints.

    9. The New Anti-Viral

    Research into the anti-viral effects of oil diffusion is now just gaining steam. A recent study showed that star anise essential oil was proven in medical experiments to destroy the herpes simplex virus in contained areas at a rate of 99%. Another study showed the popular DoTerra oil blend OnGuard to have highly-effective influenza-combating powers.

    10. Improved Cognitive Function

    Diffusing essential oils has also been shown to improve cognitive function. Many essential oils have adaptogenic qualities, which can work twofold in soothing us when we’re stressed, and giving our bodies a pick-me-up when we’re feeling down or sluggish. By working to level out an imbalanced mood, diffused oils also help us to focus. There are also several essential oils which have been shown to help balance the body’s hormones. With prolonged use, these oils can work to repair the underlying causes responsible for hindering cognitive function.

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    11. Money Saving

    With ten clear benefits of oil diffusers already outlined, there is one more that should now be obvious: using an oil diffuser will help you to save money. As an anti-viral, bug repelling, and stress-relief solution rolled into one safe product, an oil diffuser used with the proper oils will save you money on products you might otherwise be buying to help cure those pesky headaches or get your kids to fall asleep on time. If you’re wondering just how affordable oil diffusers can be, check the buyer’s guide to the best oil diffusers — you’ll be sure to find one that fits your budget!

    Featured photo credit: Jopeel Quimpo via unsplash.com

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