DOI: 10.1177/00099228241227756 ISSN: 0009-9228

A Brief Intervention in Primary Care to Improve Parents’ Discipline Practices and Reach Other Caregivers

Seth J. Scholer, Hannah K. Martin, LauraBeth Adams, Mary S. Dietrich
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology and Child Health

Parents (N = 599) of 6-month-old to 10-year-old children were given a handbook intervention that educates about healthy discipline in a pediatric clinic serving low-income families in Nashville, Tennessee. A research assistant spent approximately 1 minute introducing the intervention. A total of 440 parents (73.4%) responded to a follow-up survey 2 to 4 months later. Most parents (88%) who completed the follow-up survey had read at least part of the handbook. Of parents who received the handbook, 63% reported that the handbook helped them discipline their children. Half of parents reported specific changes they made because of the handbook. The most frequently reported changes were more talking/explaining/communicating (25%), more redirecting (7.8%), more patience/listening (6.0%), less anger/yelling (10.8%), and less spanking (7.5%). 42% of parents reported that they shared the handbook with other caregivers, friends, relatives, and children. A brief clinic intervention improves parents’ discipline practices and reaches other caregivers.

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