Ridiculous new trend sees teenagers eating laundry detergent

Ridiculous new trend sees teenagers eating laundry detergent

As I get older, I'm finding it harder and harder to relate to teenagers. While I spent my teens, like many of us did, frustrated by the fact that no one understood me, I've come around to the other side by now. I once was certain that I would not become jaded like most adults, but it's hard not to become a little cynical when certain trends hit the mainstream of that age group.

First, there were the fidget spinners (which I'm still a bit confused by) and then there were the likes of the porta potty challenge, in which teens across America tried to see how many people they could cram into one chemical toilet. The numbers kept racking up, until one cross country team somehow managed to fit in 40 people into just one porta potty. It's kind of impressive, but then again, it's a bit of a strange thing to go viral.

Not satisfied to be done with it there, a new challenge has emerged that is even more stupid, known as the 'Tide Pod Challenge'.

The idea is that you put Tide's detergent pod in your mouth, bite down on the cleaning product and release the powdered detergent and liquid soap. No one is swallowing it, but getting it on your tongue is bad enough, given the reactions from many of these videos.

It's thought to have originated from a video put out by College Humor in March 2017, called Don't Eat The Laundry Pods.  In the video, a student is tempted to eat tide pods and, even after researching how toxic they are, he still ends up chowing down on a bowl of them. Dr. Alfred Aleguas Jr., managing director of the Florida Poison Information Center in Tampa, said if someone copied the video, they could find themselves in a "life-threatening" situation.

"Ending up in the emergency room is no joke," he said.

In 2017, poison control centers received reports of more than 10,000 exposures to the highly-concentrated laundry detergent by children 5 and younger, according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers. The AAPCC also detailed the symptoms these children had, which could be the same for adults who ingest too much of it:

"Some children who have gotten the product in their mouths have had excessive vomiting, wheezing and gasping. Some get very sleepy. Some have had breathing problems serious enough to need a ventilator to help them breathe. There have also been reports of corneal abrasions (scratches to the eyes) when the detergent gets into a child’s eyes."

On Tide's website, they advise consumers to drink a glass of water or milk if a product is swallowed and immediately call the national poison hotline. “Our laundry pacs are a highly concentrated detergent meant to clean clothes," they said in an official statement. "They should not be played with, whatever the circumstance is, even if meant as a joke”.

In addition to this, it's become a joke spreading across Twitter, although you've got to think that many of these people aren't serious enough to go through with it, as we have seen in the above videos.

Needless to say: don't do this.