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Knocking and slapping children can lead to brain and ear damage — Audiologist

Corporal or physical punishment is highly prevalent globally both in homes and schools.

Slapping

The punishment is linked to a range of negative outcomes for children including physical and mental ill-health, impaired cognitive and socio-emotional development, poor educational outcomes, increased aggression, and perpetration of violence.

An audiologist and lecturer at the University of Education Winneba (UEW), Cyril Mawuli Honu, has warned parents and guardians when disciplining their children.

He warned that slapping a child or giving children knocks on their head can easily damage their brains and ears.

According to him, "When it comes to babies and children, beating and slapping is what we call trauma. Depending on the severity, trauma could destroy a particular part of the ear. For instance, a slap can get the ear drum perforated, or destroy the arrangements of the three bones in the ear, hence affecting hearing."

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He said slaps can cause tinnitus and a disturbance of the vestibular system hence making the victim lose balance.

In an interview on Accra-based 3FM, Mawuli stated that "There are other ways to punish and child such as; time out, naughty corner, and natural consequence. Beating and hitting do not always correct the child but could even tough the child."

He, therefore, urged parents and guardians to exercise restraint when disciplining.

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