Warning: New internet challenge can cause serious injury to your kids

Injury: The challenge is to give yourself a frostbite injury © File
Injury: The challenge is to give yourself a frostbite injury © File

The ‘salt and ice challenge’ which results in children horrifically burning themselves has travelled across the Atlantic.

The craze, which has been around for a few years, involves someone placing ice and salt on their skin at the same time.

The combination of the two causes a reaction similar to frostbite, as the temperature rapidly falls far below that of ice. The idea is to see how long you can withstand the pain and then socially share photographs of the resulting injury.

The challenge started in America as far back as 2012 but, with the increased use of social media, it has now spread and school children in the UK have recently started taking on the challenge, with some instances beginning to be reported in Ireland.

salt and ice challenge injuryThe mother of a child from Swansea warned of the dangers after her son suffered serious injuries. Sharing a graphic photo of the damage she said

“It is so deep that it has burnt all the nerve endings. It is like severe frostbite. It could have gone septic and caused organ failure."

Police in the UK issued a warning advising parents to help "stop this craze and tell your kids about how dangerous it is. If your child is at secondary school you may want to know about this so you can warn your children not to take part".

An NSPCC spokesman said: "It is important for schools to keep a close eye on all emerging trends and we welcome the police’s warning to head teachers.

"The rise of social media has contributed to increasing peer pressure amongst children and this "craze" is another clear example of the risks.

"The NSPCC publishes advice and guidance for parents on discussing online safety with their children, as well as Net Aware – the UK’s only parental guide to social media and gaming apps."

If you know someone who has an injury as a result of the challenge the St. John Ambulance has issued guidelines on how to treat the patient.



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