Smacking ups risk of mental disorders

Drawing on data from the US National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions, Canadian researchers found that corporal punishment was linked to mood disorders, anxiety, alcohol and drug dependence and personality disorders.

They looked at the effects of physical punishment such as pushing, grabbing, hitting and spanking and excluded severe maltreatment, neglect and sexual abuse.

The authors estimated that 2–5% of disorders in adults such as depression, bipolar and anorexia or bulimia, and 47% of personality disorders and obsessive compulsive disorder, were attributable to past corporal punishment.
Pediatrics 2012; online 2 July