Parenting Styles and the Use of Physical Discipline: An Investigation into Correlates

Yıldız Silahlı N., Türe Ş.

Pediatric Practice & Research, vol.11, no.3, pp.116-124, 2023 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.21765/pprjournal.1355528
  • Journal Name: Pediatric Practice & Research
  • Journal Indexes: Index Copernicus, Sobiad Atıf Dizini, Other Indexes
  • Page Numbers: pp.116-124
  • Istanbul Medipol University Affiliated: Yes


Aim: Parenting is the process of supporting children in their

physical, emotional, social, and intellectual development.

Parental violence against children is widespread throughout

the world. Given the harmful effects of physical punishment,

it is important to explore alternative disciplinary methods and

promote positive parenting styles. The aim of this study was to

investigate the attitudes of parents and their use of physical


Material and Method: This descriptive cross-sectional study

was conducted at the Pediatrics Outpatient Clinic of İstanbul

Medipol University Hospital between June and December 2022.

The study included consenting parents who had children aged

between 2 and 6 years and who applied to the clinic during this

period. Participants (n:117) completed a questionnaire about

socio-demographic characteristics, the 'Parental Attitude Scale'

and the use of physical punishment.

Results: The study included 117 parents with children aged 2-6

years. Most participants were mothers (78,44%, n=91) with a

mean age of 35.02±4.11 years. The total number of children of

the participants was 117 and 59 (50.4%) of the children were

male. Seventy-seven (83.7%) of the mothers were university

graduates. Seventy-one (65.1%) of the participants had only

one child. The main characteristic of the parents' attitudes

was democracy with a score of 74.99±9.92. Only permissive

attitudes were found to be statistically significantly higher

among middle- and high-income parents than among low-

income parents. Among the participants, 41.6% (n:47) reported

using any form of punishment, 16.1% (n:18) reported using

physical punishment and 74.1% (n:86) reported using verbal


Conclusion: In our study, it is noteworthy that although the

participant parents exhibited a democratic attitude in the

foreground, physical punishment was used. Parenting and

disciplinary practices should be evaluated during child health

follow-up and the family should be mentored about possible

damaging disciplinary methods. Appropriate parenting styles

can help families develop positive parenting characteristics

and promote the development of mentally healthy children.

More comprehensive studies are needed on this subject.

Keywords: Parenting, parental attitudes, physical punishment,