The most recent social media craze circulating is far, far riskier than the “chair challenge” and the “ice bucket challenge.”
TikTok is being used by teenagers to take part in the “pass out” challenge, which entails shaking their heads back and forth in an attempt to pass out.
Thousands of teenagers have shared videos of themselves doing it, with comments like “I can’t believe it worked” and “Okay, it works…
I also fell out of bed, which was painful.”
When looking over the footage, Techstry observed children as young as eight attempting it.
In reality, this dangerous “task” can result in death.
This isn’t the first time this practice has gained popularity, and it has taken several forms over the years, all with the goal of producing transient hypoxia in order to generate a high.
It has been termed “flatline,” “choking game,” and “space monkey,” according to Time. It dates back to the 1930s.
Children used ropes to choke their airways during the “choking game,” which resulted in the deaths of 82 children aged 6 to 19 in the United States alone between 1995 and 2007.
In 2017, a 13-year-old Brisbane boy died while playing “the good boys game” (so termed because it does not involve drugs or alcohol).
“What is genuinely going on in the brain is a scarcity of oxygen, analogous to someone drowning, suffocating, or suffering a cardiac attack,” says GP Nick Flynn.
“A lack of oxygen to the brain for more than three minutes can cause brain damage, and a lack of oxygen to the brain for more than five minutes can cause death.”
The hashtag #passoutchallenge is mentioned in articles from earlier this month, such as those from The Daily Dot and The Mirror, however, based on our research, the hashtag appears to have been removed from TikTok entirely.
It hasn’t stopped kids from inventing new hashtags to share their videos with their classmates, such as the shorter #passout.
The bulk of the videos Editorial24 saw was from the United Kingdom or the United States, but just because something is popular on social media doesn’t mean it isn’t also popular in Australia.