'Salt and Ice Challenge': Parents Warned About Craze In UK Schools
Police have issued a warning about the "salt and ice challenge." Parents were advised to educate children about the internet craze that has found children burning themselves. The salt and ice mixture results in a painful burning sensation. Part of the challenge is to try to withstand the pain as long as possible while being recorded and then it is posted on social media.
According to iTV, the YouTube videos were posted back in 2012 and in total, had 6.8 million views. It became a trend and swept the US several years back and now has made a comeback with British secondary school children.
Most of these children suffer second to third degree burns. Injuries are extreme as the skin is numbed with ice and children are unaware of the extent of damage it causes.
Combining salt and ice results in an eutectic frigorific mixture and the reaction is similar to frostbite, where the burns are caused due to a rapid fall of temperature below -18 °F (-28 °C).
North Devon Journal reported one mother who wished to remain anonymous, thought that it was a cut. After realizing it was a burn the child was taken to the burns unit and the consultant was surprised to have seen an ice cube do so much damage.
"The burns were so severe that there was a debate about whether he should receive a skin graft," said the boy's mother. The doctors decided not to go through with the skin graft as the boy seemed to have retained full motor skills in his hand.
The salt and ice mixture burned deep through the boy's nerve endings. He lost feeling on the burnt surface itself. Similar to frostbite it may have gone septic and possibly could have caused organ failure.
Schools, not only in the UK but also everywhere around the world, need to keep a close eye on emerging trends. Social media has increased social pressure amongst children and it is really something to watch out for.