‘Vacuum Challenge’ Is A Risky Social Media Fad That Could Even Kill Brain Cells
By Mikelle Leow, 06 Jun 2019
Image via Shutterstock
Add the word “challenge” to anything and, all of a sudden, people are willing to risk their health for it.
Following the notorious ‘Tide Pod Challenge’ and a recent ‘Shell On’ dare involving the consumption of fruit peels and food packaging, a ‘Vacuum Challenge’ has emerged that encourages social media users to vacuum-seal themselves in trash bags.
Otherwise known as the ‘Trash Bag Challenge’, this outrageous fad has people sitting inside plastic bags, more often trash bags, and then getting an accomplice to suck out the air from the carrier using the hose of a vacuum.
The draw of this challenge, apparently, is that the airtight seal around the participant would result in him or her toppling over.
While the dare isn’t entirely new, it has resurfaced in 2019 to join other contentious and ridiculous fads. Looking up ‘#vacuumchallenge’ on Twitter turns up several videos of willing participants who are in it for the laughs on social media. In this aspect, they have succeeded, as Yahoo News reports that some of these clips have garnered thousands of likes.
As you might have imagined, this challenge also comes with potential health complications. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, oxygen deprivation could result in cerebral hypoxia, a condition where the brain suffers a drop in oxygen supply despite receiving enough blood flow.
In mild cases, cerebral hypoxia could lead to inattentiveness, poor judgment, a loss in memory, and a deterioration of motor coordination skills.
However, the organization warns that brain cells are “extremely sensitive” to a lack of oxygen, and “can begin to die within five minutes” after oxygen supply is cut off.
Apart from these symptoms, there’s a chance you might injure yourself since it’s almost impossible to move your limbs and keep yourself balanced inside an airtight bag.
While the challenge might appear as a breath of fresh air to daredevils, it’s really not.
#LoViralHOY El nuevo '#Challenge' es #VacuumChallenge o #AspiradoraChallenge, el cual consiste en meterse dentro de una bolsa de basura, dejando la cabeza fuera y con una aspiradora absorber todo el aire hasta que quede completamente sellado al #vacío. #PeriódicoHOY pic.twitter.com/fv9aINNw1b— Periódico Hoy (@PeriodicoHoy) May 30, 2019
[via Yahoo News, videos via various sources, cover image via Shutterstock]
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