Teens Are Obsessed With The Hot Water Challenge — But It’s Super Dangerous

July 31, 2018

Every few weeks, a new internet challenge emerges from the depths of social media, taking over Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook newsfeeds for a while until the popularity dies down. Just as the #ShiggyChallenge started to wind down, another one is coming up to take its place. Teens are apparently obsessed with the Hot Water Challenge, but this one isn’t funny — it’s actually super dangerous. So far, at least one person who did the challenge has ended up in the hospital.

According to Forbes, the Hot Water Challenge involves pouring boiling hot water on someone as a “prank,” or having them drink boiling hot water through a straw. Whichever option you choose, they both sound incredibly stupid… and yet, there are people who are actually taking part in it. This week, one of the victims is trying to raise awareness on exactly how dangerous this challenge is, and why it needs to be avoided at all costs. Which should honestly be a no-brainer, but hey.

Just last week, 15-year-old Kyland Clark was hanging out with a friend when they looked up challenges on YouTube and then decided to prank each other. Kyland told WCVB that when he was sleeping, his friend poured boiling hot water on him as a joke. The “prank” left Kyland with second-degree burns on his back, chest, and face. He had to stay in the hospital for a week to undergo treatments.

Kyland explained the horrifying ordeal to WCVB, saying, “My skin just fell off my chest, and then I looked in the mirror and I had skin falling off here and on my face.” In a video, you can see that Kyland is covered in bandages, and his skin looks pale, pink, and bloody.

FYI, it’s very gruesome — only look if you think you can handle it.

Dr. Ed Bartkus, from IU Health, told WCVB that they see a lot of people end up in the emergency room because of internet challenges such as this one, which is sad news to hear. He added that the Hot Water Challenge specifically could lead to someone having permanent disfigurement due to burns on the body, or even burns to the airway that could cause death. An eight-year-old from Florida actually died after attempting the challenge last year. He added, “If your friends are telling you to do this, they aren’t good friends.”

Kyland has some words of wisdom for anyone interested in pranks and internet challenges. He said, “There’s a limit to what you should do in a challenge and what you shouldn’t. Don’t take it overboard.”

This certainly isn’t the first internet challenge to take things too far. Remember the Tide Pod Challenge that encouraged teens to make themselves sick by eating actual Tide Pods? Or the Kylie Jenner Lip Challenge, for which people were deliberately irritating their lips to make them look bigger? Some challenges can be amusing, but anything that threatens your health? It’s just not worth it. Let’s all make this Hot Water Challenge go away ASAP.

Instead of throwing boiling water on yourself or eating laundry detergent pods, start a meaningful (and safe) challenge with your friends! Such as…the person who’s volunteered the most hours at the local shelter wins a free pizza from their friends. Sounds like a way better deal, all around.