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Health risk: Detergent Challenge is life-threatening


Warning of "Tide Pod Challenge": Teens bite in detergent tabs

The so-called “Tide Pod Challenge” is currently circulating on social networks. Young people bite into detergent tabs and hope for Internet fame. But the action is extremely dangerous. If the liquid is swallowed, there is a risk of severe poisoning. The capsule manufacturer now expressly warns of the life-threatening trend.

Dangerous trend on the Internet

In recent years, the so-called "Ice Bucket Challenge" has caused a sensation. As part of this campaign, thousands of people around the world poured ice water over their heads to collect money and use it to fund research into an incurable nerve disorder. However, other people are sometimes challenged on social networks for no reasonable reason. For example, in the “Cinnamon Challenge” where young people are supposed to swallow a spoonful of cinnamon without liquid. A Dutch boy fell into a coma as a result. Now there is another bizarre trend: as part of the "Tide Pod Challenge" teenagers bite into a detergent capsule. The manufacturer of the tabs now warns of the dangerous test of courage.

Teenagers bite detergent capsules

The head of the US company Procter & Gamble (P&G), David Taylor, warned teenagers in a blog entry against using washing machine tabs of their "Tide" brand for the so-called "Tide Pod Challenge".

In this “challenge”, the participants put the colored capsules of the detergent into their mouths and bite around until the fine gel skin bursts, the liquid detergent spreads on the tongue and slowly runs out of the mouth.

The videos of it are then posted on YouTube or Facebook. Apparently, many of the young people are not aware of the dangers they are exposing themselves to.

Not to laugh at

"The possible life-changing consequences of this act, which internet fame seeks, can bring down young people's hopes and dreams and ultimately their health," Taylor writes.

"Let's take a moment to talk to the young people in our lives and let them know that their lives and health are more important than clicks, views and likes," said the CEO.

"Please help them understand that this is not a laugh."

Challenge made numerous hospital deliveries

The American Association of Poison Control Centers also knows that the "test of courage" is not a laughing matter.

In the first two weeks of 2018, this recorded almost 40 cases in which adolescents were hospitalized for contact with detergent tablets.

In more than 90 percent of the cases, the teenagers had swallowed the liquid detergent.

Children can poison themselves

German experts have also pointed out in the past that detergent capsules pose a risk of poisoning for children.

The President of the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), Professor Dr. Dr. Andreas Hensel, years ago, that "the colorful, shiny, large candy-looking liquid caps are particularly attractive for children".

In some cases, the detergent is swallowed in the candy look because of the colorful appearance.

Poisoning with detergent leads to health problems such as nausea and vomiting, shortness of breath and loss of consciousness. In extreme cases there is a danger to life.

The Federal Institute has asked manufacturers to take appropriate measures to make these products less attractive to children in terms of shape, color and surface finish.

Stop dangerous trend

As part of the “Tide Pod Challenge”, the capsules are not put into the mouth by mistake, but intentionally.

"Even the strictest standards and protocols, labels, and warnings cannot prevent intentional abuse that is fueled by poor judgment and a desire for popularity," wrote Taylor.

According to him, P&G is working with other partners "to stop this dangerous trend".

It should also ensure "that social media networks remove videos that glorify this harmful behavior."

YouTube and Facebook have meanwhile announced to block videos of the "Tide Pod Challenge". (ad)

Author and source information


Video: Tide Pod Challenge: The Viral Challenge Encouraging Teens To Eat Laundry Detergent (January 2022).