The Charles Street Times

The Forbidden Fruit

Sarah Quinones, Editor

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In a world filled with never ending memes and trends, we are always waiting for what the Internet can come up with next. Most recently, children and teens are now eating the famous laundry detergent known as Tide Pods.

Ever since Tide Pods were introduced they had a child proof guard, so that small children wouldn’t mistake them for candy. However, teenagers have the ability to open these child proof guards and are consuming Tide Pods comparing them to the famous candy known as Gushers. Of course, teenagers are simply doing this to be funny on the Internet and have their 15 minutes of fame, but they don’t really take into account the dangers of consuming laundry detergent. Some of these individuals experience foaming at the mouth and severe coughing spells after consuming a pod. It’s more than just a strange behavior, it’s potentially deadly. The outside wrapping of a Tide Pod is made of polyvinyl alcohol (PVA), a water soluble plastic compound. For the same reason that this packet dissolves in the machine washing laundry, it can also dissolve in a person’s mouth, leading to the immediate release and absorption of the contents and chemicals. Tide Pods are not meant for human consumption, and for good reason. They contain dangerous chemicals that, if ingested, can lead to life threatening breathing problems, damage to the esophagus from these dangerous chemicals, burns, high blood pressure, intestinal problems and neurological symptoms, including loss of consciousness.

The exact number of deaths related to the Tide pod challenge are unclear however, a growing number of injuries have been linked to the ingestion of tide products, for any reason, as they have grown in popularity. According to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, there were 10,570 cases of detergent exposure reported to poison centers in 2017, for children 5 and younger. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), reported eight deaths related to Tide Pod ingestion since these products hit the market in 2012, through mid 2017.

In conclusion, swallowing Tide Pods is not funny and can lead to death. Just because it’s a current internet trend doesn’t mean you have to do it. Swallowing Tide Pods doesn’t make you popular, but seem ignorant and dangerous.

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