Social media trend of eating laundry detergent pods could be deadly

Social media trend of eating laundry detergent pods could be deadly (File Photo).

There is a social media trend that could be deadly. It is called the laundry pod challenge.

Kids and teenagers across the nation are putting detergent pods in their mouths. Some are even ingesting them.

"Laundry pods have been a concern for several years now," said Dr. Jeanie Jaramillo-Stametz, Texas Poison Center Managing Director. "Although our concern has always been with young children getting into them when we leave them out. It's alarming and concerning that we have people who are now intentionally ingesting these products that can do them harm."

Some of the ingredients include ethanol, hydrogen peroxide and polymers. It is a toxic mix that is meant to clean clothing.

"The best thing to do is to not do it," said Jaramillo-Stametz. We really want to encourage kids that this is dangerous. It's not funny, it's not cute, it's not smart and it's not something you should be doing for attention. If you have swallowed one, drinking some water to help it dilute those components down, telling your parent and letting an adult know that you've done it so they can get you some medical attention would be the best thing, and call the poison center."

She says it can be fatal. There have been children in the past who have died from eating them unintentionally.

"With out teens, they have to be getting the laundry pods from somewhere so as a parent I would say put them up," Jaramillo-Stametz said. "Put them up somewhere where your teen doesn't have access to them. Talk to your teenage and tell them that this is dangerous, it's not smart."

The whole purpose of this challenge is to post videos online with the hashtag "laundry pod challenge."

"With teenagers I think it's just the thrill of the moment and wanting to be part of this trend, wanting to be on Youtube, that makes them think that they should do this challenge," said Jaramillo-Stametz.

If you think your kid has participated in this challenge, you are urged to call poison control. The main signs are vomiting and coughing and it is important to seek medical care immediately.

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