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The New Viral ‘Tide Pod Challenge’ Is Very Dangerous, Doctors Warn

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Teenagers—let’s face it—are not known for always making the best of decisions. A lot of them are very driven people, dedicated towards securing a bright future for themselves; the rest of them seem committed to making people over the age of 30 roll their eyes when they learn about the sort of shenanigans in which teenagers are engaging.

Recently, teenagers have started engaging in a truly bizarre activity—it may be the stupidest thing that teenagers have ever done in the history of mankind. They’ve decided to start eating laundry detergent. To be specific, they are eating Tide detergent pods, which are typically used to do normal laundry detergent-related things (i.e., clean clothing and bedding materials).

Here’s a fact for you: laundry detergent is simply not meant for human consumption. The packaging even states very clearly that the pods are not meant for human consumption. You sort of have to ask yourself why such a warning is necessary on the packaging. Who would even consider putting one of those things in their mouth? Well, a lot of people apparently.

So what’s going on here? Well, to the surprise of probably no one, social media is sort of at the heart of this bizarre and dangerous fad. Naturally, the teenagers are posting videos of themselves putting the pods in their mouth. There are also videos of the pods being used to top a pizza—as well as being put in cereal.

Why anyone would ruin pizza with laundry detergent is truly a mystery that just can’t be solved, as such an action defies all logic.

So what happens, essentially, is a teenager sticks one of the pods in his or her mouth, then dares others watching the video to do similarly. It is called the Tide Pod Challenge.

Why anyone would do so is a mystery, as those with the pod in their mouths don’t exactly seem to be enjoying the experience. There’s a lot of gagging.

Medical professionals, for obvious reasons, aren’t terribly happy about this new trend. Eating those pods could be fatal. Because of the chemicals contained within, they’re very likely to make the person who consume them to become very ill.

Those who consume the Tide detergent pods should probably expect, at the very least, to get nauseous. Vomiting and diarrhea are common results. Even worse, consuming them could cause respiratory problems if the detergent ends up in one’s lungs.

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Even if they’re just put in the mouth and not swallowed, the pods can be dangerous to the person foolish enough to engage in the Tide Pod Challenge. According to doctors, burns to the eyes—as well as to the esophagus and respiratory tract—can result.

Apparently, the reason the challenge started may have been because social media users noted that the pods look like a sweet and fruity snack. It also may have started because of the satirical website “The Onion”, which issued a challenge that people took seriously, apparently because they didn’t recognize that “The Onion” is a satirical website. The website “College Humor” also posted a video last year about eating the pods.

Tide, of course, reminds people that the pods should never be consumed or played with, adding that they should also be kept away from children; apparently, because of their colorful and good-smelling nature, the pods are attractive to children. The United States Consumer Safety Commission even issued a warning about the pods several years back.

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As Tide explicitly said, safety is no joke. If it hasn’t been made clear already—Tide really doesn’t want you eating their laundry detergent.

The Tide Pod Challenge is pretty new, but people have been getting ill for a while. In 2017, over 10,000 children under the age of five wound up being treated due to being exposed to the detergent capsules. Over 200 teenagers were treated, as well, but about a quarter of those cases were as a result of intentional exposure to the poisonous pods.

In 2018, so far, there have been almost 40 cases of poisoning due to the pods, and about 50 percent of them were intentional on the part of the “patient”.

At least 10 or so deaths have been confirmed to be the result of the pods; the deceased were very small children and senior citizens who were unfortunately suffering from dementia.

If for whatever reason you wind up with a laundry detergent pod in your mouth and swallow it, do yourself a favor and drink either water or milk; then do yourself another favor and call a poison control center. After all of that is taken care of, you may want to call a therapist; you’re eating laundry detergent, and that is not a normal behavior.

Surprisingly enough, the eating of laundry pods doesn’t seem to intoxicate those who choose to consume them. You would think that if teenagers were to engage in a dangerous and possibly fatal activity involving the consumption of poison, they would be doing so to get high. That does not appear to be the case with the Tide Pod Challenge; it seems as if teenagers are consuming the pods because they’re being challenged or “dared” to, and it may be as bizarrely simple as that.

H/T – Source

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Written by Amanda Johnson

Amanda Johnson is a former Army brat who resides in southern Alabama. She is married to her wonderful husband, Brian, and has four children; Justin, Nicolas, Molly, and Lucas. She loves reading, writing, cooking, and going to concerts. She also loves spending time at the beach and hopes to retire there someday.

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