The Latest Social Media Challenge Is Sending Kids to the Hospital

There used to be times when children would spend hours outside playing in the playgrounds, on the streets, behind the cars. Nowadays, they still go out, holding their tablets and phones, to share something they’ve learned on social media. Social media challenges are a curious thing that the technology has brought upon us, and it’s not only kids who do them, but adults too.

The recent Twitter challenge with ‘one trip with the grocery bags’ has made millions try it out and post about it. But some challenges come with great risks, like this one.

Minor burns are a real thing happening as a social media challenge and doctors are pretty shocked.

Recently, doctors have seen a resurgence of cases involving minor burns. Interestingly, none of these patients had accidents with irons or stoves. Instead, these kids used salt and ice instead to make a dangerous mixture. When both items are joined, the two can do damage in the form of frostbite and even second-degree burns. Fox News reports that salt can reduce the temperature of ice to 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit, which will cause frostbite.

In the viral videos, the subjects press the ice-salt mixture to their skin with great pressure. This instantly gives them a lot of pain, as well as redness and scarring.

You are probably wondering why would anyone purposely burn themselves in the first place. Well, simply put, it’s because of social media fame. Sadly, kids have been “accepting” the challenge in order to post their own videos. Peer pressure is very strong.

Participants, who are also beloved YouTubers, film themselves doing this challenge for fast fame. But they also didn’t think about the young people watching.

KERO out of Bakersfield shares one story of a mother watching several children who tried the challenge on their own, but she wasn’t aware of that. The kids just asked for ice and salt, and then ended up injured and admitted to having used them for the social media challenge. Two of the children who participated needed medical attention after being diagnosed with minor burns. “It happened so quick,” explains Lydia Gonzalez, the caretaker of the burned children. “They came, and they asked for salt. I made dinner, and then, all of a sudden, the whole story came out.”

“I was surprised,” she continues, “You see all that stuff, but I guess you never think that it ever happens in your own home.”

If you have kids at home, it might be worth starting a conversation about this dangerous trend that is certainly going viral.

In the United Kingdom, the National Society For the Prevention of Cruelty to Children already issued a warning to parents about this latest craze.

“It is important for schools to keep a close eye on all emerging trends and we welcome the warning to parents,” An NSPCC spokesperson told the Huffington Post UK.

“The rise of social media has contributed to increasing peer pressure among children. This ‘craze’ [salt and ice challenge] is another clear example of the risks.”

Here is one of the many videos showing the challenge:

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