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Alert!: Is your Child Playing the Dangerous Choking Game?



Few days back when I came across a link posted on Facebook by my best friend on the choking game, I had numerous reactions but my initial reaction after reading that news was of shock and disbelief and I was left wondering by what standards was this stupid, mindless phenomenon being called as a game, and that too choking game of all the names. But then it is being observed that kids love this game, as it gives them a high like a potent drug. So what exactly is this choking game, and how are our children in danger due to this potentially dangerous phenomenon.

Choking game: definition

The choking game as defined by Wikipedia refers to intentionally cutting off oxygen to the brain with the goal of inducing temporary syncope and euphoria. There are two distinct methods used to achieve oxygen deprivation: strangulation and self-induced hypocapnia. The choking game is also known as fainting game and there are numerous varieties of local slang names that refer to choking game. And Good Kids’ High is one of the popular names among kids for this phenomenon.

 

Warning signs that your kid is indulging in it

The game is quite popular among the kids between the age of 9 and 16 years and there are lots of visible signs that point out that the child is indulging in it. There are physical symptoms and then there are certain behavioural changes as well that will help you in finding out the truth.

Physical symptoms that your child may exhibit include

  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Frequent and severe headaches
  • Unexplained marks on the neck
  • Pinpoint bleeding spots under the skin of the face, the eyelids, or the lining of the eyelids and eyes

Personality and behaviour changes that your child starts exhibiting include

  • Disorientation after spending time alone
  • Increased and uncharacteristic irritability or hostility
  • Wearing high-necked shirts, even in warm weather
  • The presence of ropes, scarves, and/or belts tied to bedroom furniture or doorknobs, or left out.
  • The unexplained presence of items like dog leashes, choke collars or bungee cords.

These symptoms are quite common when somebody is strangulated by someone or tries self-strangulation, so if you notice any of these signs please don’t ignore them. If you notice any of these physical signs don’t take them lightly, especially the unexplained marks on the neck and bloodshot eyes. Similarly if your kid insists on wearing high-necked shirts during the warm weather, or there are dog leashes, bungee cords and there are visible signs of scratch on the furniture then be forewarned that your kid is in danger and you need to warn them and bring them back to ground reality.

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Swati Nitin Gupta is a journalist with extensive experience in writing for newspapers, tabloids, magazines and online media in India as well as Middle East. She has written on a range of topics, from human interest stories to event coverage to features on topics like fashion, beauty, women, children, travel and general health issues. As an Indian Army officer's daughter, Swati has been been exposed to the various cultures and lifestyles of different states of the country – knowledge of which she tries to incorporate in her writing. Swati also maintains her personal blogs at swatisays.wordpress.com and swati1012.wordpress.com.


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