Child Development, IQ Boosts Related to Parental Treatment

How parents treat and discipline their children has a huge effect upon their children’s development later on in life and on their IQ, according to numerous studies. 

Put simply, positive treatment and discipline boosts a child’s IQ and leads to smart kids while abuse has been found to lower a child’s IQ.  

A 1998 University of New Hampshire study found that spanking lowers a child’s IQ by four points. Of the 960 children studied, those who were not spanked demonstrated an IQ average of 102 points while those who were spanked typically test at an average of 98 points. 

The researchers found that the actual spanking did not cause physical damage that led to the lower IQ scores, but the fact that the parents who did not spank spent more time communicating with their children and explaining to them why their actions were wrong.  

This kind of communication resulted in these children learning reasoning skills-the kind that result in higher IQs. The children who were spanked did not learn these skills and as a result tested lower on the IQ tests. 

The how-to-treat your child debate doesn’t just hinge on to-spank or not-to-spank, it’s about positive stimulation versus negative stimulation. In fact, researchers are not sure which is worse-negative stimulation or no stimulation at all. Negative stimulation has been linked to a loss of as much as four IQ points, but devastating physiological effects may be caused by minimal or no stimulation at all. 

A 1995 study conducted by researchers at Baylor University showed that children who were spoken to or touched only rarely possessed brains that were actually 20 to 30 percent smaller than their peers who received ample amounts of positive interaction.

Those same children in the study who did not receive enough stimulation could not use toys imaginatively nor seek out and attempt to understand the objects around them. 

The real key to child development and boosting your child’s IQ is to strike a balance between meeting their emotional needs and stimulating them intellectually. When this balance is struck, children grow up to be well-adjusted and productive adults.

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