Parents today are bombarded with parenting advice – some of it helpful, while other pieces may be harmful or misleading. Parents must take caution in dispelling myths surrounding parenting advice that could put their children in harm’s way. Here are ten myths you need to disprove today.
So it is a fallacy that only children are entitled and self-centered, when this is far from true as children can be spoilt regardless of whether or not they have siblings.
1. Vaccines Cause Autism
Vaccines have been around for decades and they have never been shown to cause any long-term health issues or immediate side effects, proving their worth by protecting not only children but also other members of society from disease. Their effectiveness means they not only prevent it but can protect people who do not vaccinate. The only danger posed by vaccines comes in the form of rare allergic reactions which would likely happen with any medication than with vaccination.
This dangerous parenting myth stems from Andrew Wakefield’s 1998 study published in the medical journal The Lancet. However, its publication was later revoked as it was found that Wakefield was being compensated by lawyers seeking litigation against manufacturers of MMR vaccine and had falsified research data – yet many parents remain convinced of an association between autism and vaccines despite numerous studies disproving it.
One reason is due to media promotion of these conspiracy theories. Celebrities and politicians who lack any scientific research knowledge often grandstand, pontificate, and spread lies to inflame public sentiment. It’s easy to be misled into believing that an anonymous researcher who pays young children to participate in flawed studies, or anecdotal reports from parents whose normally developing child suddenly regresses into autistic behaviors is more credible than CDC scientists or American Academy of Pediatrics; tort lawyers also fuel fears by perpetuating misinformation; especially since many parents have already become disenchanted after years of being bombarded with “alternative medicine.”
Problematic about this myth is its effect on parents’ decisions to forgo vaccinations for their children, which could have devastating repercussions. Childhood vaccines provide vital protection from dangerous illnesses like diphtheria, mumps, rubella, measles, tetanus pertussis (whooping cough), influenza and hepatitis B – and their consequences could return once too many parents opt out. If enough parents refuse vaccines then we risk returning to an era before vaccines were commonplace and often fatally deadly.
2. Listening to Classical Music Will Make Your Child Smarter
As a new parent, it can be daunting to juggle parenting advice from everyone around you – friends and grandmothers in grocery stores all offering their thoughts about how you should raise your kids. Unfortunately, not all advice given may be accurate and some can even be dangerous; here are some of the most dangerous myths surrounding parenting that you should try not to believe.
Mozart and Intelligence
A 1993 study published in Nature introduced what became known as the “Mozart effect.” This research compared college-age students who had heard a Mozart sonata to those who hadn’t; those exposed to Mozart scored higher on tests measuring spatial reasoning ability, prompting media reports that listening to Mozart made people smarter; many parents started playing his works for their babies and children in hopes that they’d grow into geniuses! Unfortunately, though, its effect only lasted 15 minutes at most and applied only to one type of spatial reasoning ability tests; additionally a meta-analysis conducted later the following year found no evidence of increasing intelligence due to exposure.
Relying solely on classical music to boost your child’s IQ can actually be detrimental. It takes away from interactions that help children learn and develop, forcing parents to rely on questionable marketing to teach their kids. Companies like Baby Einstein and Lumosity had to admit that Mozart CDs don’t actually make kids smarter; even they couldn’t back up their claims!
Playing music can be a wonderful way to engage babies and young children, but don’t do it with the hope that it will make them smarter. Instead, let them learn and enjoy an array of genres — Miles Davis to hip hop to Yo-Yo Ma to Chopin and Beethoven; sing-a-longs are always welcome! Your children will benefit from both its discipline and pleasure-giving aspects of musical experience.
3. Kids Will Always Grow Out of Behavioral Issues
At their age, most kids tend to outgrow most behaviors over time, such as violence and aggression. If your child acts violently towards anyone or anything, don’t ignore it – get help for your child immediately before their behavior worsens; professional assessments provide comprehensive assessment results as well as tools to help overcome problem behaviors.
Another myth that’s harmful to parents is the misconception that too much attention could spoil children. This misconception can be especially harmful when applied to infants, who rely on nurturing responsive parenting for development. They spent nine months being snuggled while they were in utero; therefore they need the same loving connection once born.
At its core, there is no single way to raise children; parents may choose different approaches when raising them – some choose to stay home while others work outside the house – which is perfectly fine – what matters is that parents show care, affection and support towards their offspring regardless of how they’re raising them.
Parenting can be an unpredictable endeavor, and it’s easy to become disoriented by all the tips out there. While some may hold some truth, it’s also vital that you check in with your pediatrician and ensure you’re not receiving advice that could potentially be harmful.
Parents may feel pressured to reward their child for good behavior or motivate them during challenging periods such as potty training. Unfortunately, doing this could backfire and encourage misbehavior that you were hoping to eliminate; rewarding misbehaving sends the message that their obedience depends solely on getting what they want from you.
Other parents may believe they must prioritize the needs of their children first and foremost, leading to neglect of marriage and possible problems down the road. While prioritizing your family is certainly important, taking care to prioritize yourself as well is equally crucial to staying happy and healthy.
4. Parenting Doesn’t Matter
There’s plenty of advice out there on how to raise children, much of it founded in myths and untruths that may cause parents unnecessary stress and disappointment. While some myths may contain truthful aspects, most do not. Parents should follow their internal compass when raising their kids – mistakes will likely happen as part of this learning experience!
Parenting myths often stem from anecdotes and oversimplification of complex social and psychological issues. A popular myth suggests that parents must prioritize the needs of their children above those of themselves, yet this can create many complications for both parties involved. Michaelson suggests this belief leads to parents neglecting themselves in favor of prioritizing children’s needs over their own; leaving exhausted and frustrated adults to lead troubled households that break apart easily.
Myth: Disciplining children doesn’t work is another dangerous and misinformed belief that stems from misinterpreting what constitutes discipline. Effective discipline involves teaching more appropriate, socially acceptable behavior rather than punishing when children misbehave – the best way to implement discipline with children is talking through their behaviors and setting ground rules they can abide by.
Parenting matters because it shapes how our children will turn out in life. Parents must take this responsibility seriously or risk having their children suffer as a result. If parents want to abdicate this role in their children’s lives, however, then they should be wary about any parenting myths they believe or spread to others.
Parenting requires understanding what works and doesn’t work. While it may be tempting to accept advice from everyone, some can contain untruths which do more harm than good. Debunking these myths does not intend to criticize parents but empower them with accurate information so that they can make wiser choices for their children.