Severe physical punishment and mental health problems in an economically disadvantaged population of children and adolescents

46Citations
Citations of this article
74Readers
Mendeley users who have this article in their library.

Abstract

Objective: To estimate the prevalence of severe physical punishment of children/adolescents in a low-income community, and to examine child mental health problems as a potential correlate. Method: This study is a Brazilian cross-sectional pilot study of the World Studies of Abuse in Family Environments. A probabilistic sample of clusters including all eligible households (women aged 15-49 years, son/daughter < 18 years) was evaluated. One mother-child pair was randomly selected per household (n = 89; attrition = 11%). Outcome (severe physical punishment of children/adolescents by mother/father) was defined as shaking (if age ≤ 2 years), kicking, choking, smothering, burning/scalding/branding, beating, or threatening with weapon. Three groups of potential correlates were examined: child/adolescent (age, gender, physical/mental health); mother (education, unemployment, physical/mental health, harsh physical punishment in childhood, marital violence); father (unemployment, drunkenness). Severe marital violence was defined as kicking, hitting, beating or use of /threat to use a weapon. The following standardized questionnaires were applied by trained interviewers: World Studies of Abuse in Family Environments Core Questionnaire, Child Behavior Checklist, Self-Report Questionnaire. Results: Outcome prevalence was 10.1%. Final logistic regression models identified two correlates: maternal harsh physical punishment in childhood (total sample, OR = 5.3, p = 0.047), and child/adolescent mental health problems (sub-sample aged 4-17 years, n = 67, OR = 9.1, p = 0.017). Conclusions: Severe physical punishment of children/adolescents is frequent in the studied community. The victims have a higher probability of becoming future perpetrators. When intrafamilial violence occurs, child/adolescent mental health may be compromised.

Cite

CITATION STYLE

APA

Bordin, I. A. S., Paula, C. S., Do Nascimento, R., & Duarte, C. S. (2006). Severe physical punishment and mental health problems in an economically disadvantaged population of children and adolescents. Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria, 28(4), 290–296. https://doi.org/10.1590/S1516-44462006000400008

Register to see more suggestions

Mendeley helps you to discover research relevant for your work.

Already have an account?

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free