Posted by: Ticktock | September 27, 2009

This Week In Parenting Science 9/26/09

There are a lot of science links this week, including one study about our recent topic of discussion. Great timing!

Spanking & Intelligence – Those of you who have been arguing against spanking might have some more ammo to add to your arsenal. As many have already commented, two new studies seem to show a correlation between low intelligence and spanking. Neither study distinguished whether the spanking was severe or moderate (my reason for supporting the minority), and one study was from 20 year old self-reported data about the mother’s habits (not the father’s).

Intelligence & Eating Disorders – According to a retrospective cohort study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, parents with a college education are six times more likely than less educated parents to have a child with an eating disorder. There’s also a link between a girl’s high grades and her likelihood to be anorexic or bulimic.

Teens + Cars = CRASH!! – Are you the parent of a new driver? You might want to download this pdf that gives practical advice for parents of teen drivers. Two studies by Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia prove that the best ways to keep teen drivers safe are for parents to set clear rules about driving and to have your child share the car she uses with another family member.

Booby Milk and Testes – Breast milk will wreck your son’s testes and make his sperm sparse and lethargic! OK, well that risk is contingent on whether there are PCBs and pesticides in your breast milk, but that’s still disturbing news coming from the Department of Growth and Reproduction in Rigshospitalet, Denmark. The study will be published in the Journal of Andrology.

Winter Babies & Intelligence – Two Notre Dame economists may have cracked the code for why winter babies have done consistently worse in school than their summer-born peers. They broke down the data to discover that winter babies were far more likely to be from low income families. It’s probable that the poor grades are due to the lack of affluence rather than the season in which the child was born. I’d be interested to see some more evidence behind this data correlation before anyone puts the nail in the coffin.


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