Teen Choking Game Goes Viral

YouTube videos offer how-to for teens looking for a high

By Emily Rauhala,  Newser User

Posted Jan 6, 2010 7:40 AM CST

(Newser) – Videos showing teens strangling each other for fun have gone viral, offering young people step-by-step instructions on how to get high by squeezing the carotid artery to restrict the flow of oxygen to the brain. Medical experts say the practice, known as 'the pass out game" can lead to brain damage and death. "This is disturbing, highly dangerous, very risky and should be avoided at all costs," one researcher told the Independent.

They advise parents and educators to learn the warning signs—unexplainable headaches, bruising around the neck, bloodshot eyes or ear pain—to help curb the craze, which they say is most popular among high-achieving teens who prefer this to getting caught with drugs or alcohol. The CDC estimates the "game" killed 82 US teens between 1995 and 2007; Games Adolescents Shouldn't Play, a campaign group, puts the figure at 458.

In this screen grab from a video posted on YouTube, two teenagers play the so-called 'pass out game.'
In this screen grab from a video posted on YouTube, two teenagers play the so-called 'pass out game.'   (YouTube)
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Caution: This video may be disturbing for some readers.   (lilpink1165)

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