TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - It's a trend taking the internet world by storm: Eating Tide Pods. But this trend has medical professionals deeply concerned for your child's safety. Do you know how to protect your child from falling prey to the challenge?
It seems silly, eating a highly concentrated laundry packet or tide pod. It's something medical professionals never expected to have to warn teens about.
"We're always looking for what are those unintentional injuries that may occur, things that are accidental," said Gina Veres, injury prevention specialist at ProMedica Toledo Children's Hospital. "But this is not accidental, children and teenagers are ingesting these purposely."
Eating one of these could cause serious harm to your child because of the concentration in the product.
"I'm sure that a lot of these teenagers are not realizing how easily that gel outer portion is disintegrating in their mouth and just spilling that concentrated fluid in their mouth very quickly," Veres said.
Ingesting these pods can cause a loss of vision, burn your esophagus or stomach, create breathing problems and even a loss of consciousness.
The concern isn't just for teens. Young children and even some elderly have accidentally eaten the product.
"They are very squishy and nice and soft so of course it's something they think they can play with and the bright colors."
In Ohio, the poison control center has had cases of tide pod ingestion. I
A media relations specialist with the Nationwide Children's Hospital made statement in an email saying the following:
They said Lucas County had only one case of laundry pod ingestion, but due to HIPPA no further details were released. Due to these numbers they don't see the challenge as a huge phenomenon. But still, those at ProMedica Toledo Children's Hospital want you to talk to your kids about the risks and why they should avoid it.
"You can't shield them from everything," said Gina Veres, injury prevention specialist. "But if they at least know what the dangers are hopefully they will make a good decision."
If you do have laundry pods it's suggested that you keep them in the original packaging and place them high and out of the reach of children.
Medical professionals say if for some reason a pod is ingested you should contact the poison center at 1-800-222-1222 or call 911 if the situation is more serious and needs immediate attention.