What is the Tide Pod Challenge?
The Tide Pod Challenge is where students attempt to consume a plastic laundry detergent pod. At first the challenge started as a joke but now poison control centers are warning parents about this dangerous activity. The risks of this viral dare include: choking on the liquid by inhaling it, vomiting, change in blood pressure/heart rate, having seizures, or losing consciousness. Ingredients in the detergent can burn the mouth, digestive system, and stomach. When students partake in the challenge, they upload videos of themselves eating laundry detergent capsules and post them to social media for validation.
Tide Pod Challenge in the news
The so-called ‘Tide Pod challenge,’ which reportedly began as a joke, has become enough of a thing that it has garnered responses from a government watchdog, poison control centers, and Tide’s parent company, Procter & Gamble. Now YouTube is weighing in too. –Fast Company
Children who have been exposed to the [Tide Pod] capsules have been hospitalized with vomiting, breathing difficulties and loss of consciousness. –Washington Post
Thirty-nine reports of teenagers intentionally misusing laundry pods came in during the first 15 days of 2018 alone. –Time
Why should parents care?
The Tide Pod Challenge is incredibly dangerous. It’s essentially ingesting poison
Even if a student doesn’t eat the entire laundry detergent pod, just ingesting a tiny bit can lead to serious health repercussions. If detergent makes its way into the bloodstream and organs, the effects could be fatal.
With so many teens posting videos of this dangerous challenge, YouTube has issued a statement that it will remove any videos that show students partaking in this challenge.
YouTube is also taking further steps to completely terminate channels that have any videos of people eating laundry detergent capsules.
What can parents do?
If your student has eaten a laundry detergent pod, call 911, or contact the poison control center 1-800-222-1222 or a doctor immediately. Consider reading Tide’s safety protocol to learn how you can protect your family and home. Talk to your children about the Tide Pod Challenge and explain the serious health repercussions associated with it. Monitor your student’s digital footprint to see if they are watching, liking, or creating posts about the Tide Pod Challenge. Consider contacting your teen’s school. If your child has engaged with anything like the Tide Pod Challenge, other students might be engaging with it too
Urge your child to report any misbehavior they encounter online and on social media
Consider joining Parent University to get videos you can watch WITH your kids so they will learn how to be safe and smart online