Doctors warn against latest ‘challenge’ after videos show teens eating laundry detergent pods

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - The latest dangerous challenge being circulated on social media has people recording themselves eating Tide laundry pods.

"I think it's kind of foolish because number one, I think most of the problem comes from the coating itself. If you look at data for liquid soap ingestion, just liquid soap ingestion by itself doesn't cause too many problems," said St. Vincent Health's Dr. Joe Krug.

A quick YouTube search returns a thread of videos showing people eating the pods and gagging.

"So you'll get burns to the skin, burns to the eye, a lot of problems that are more sever burns to the respiratory tract, burns to the esophagus," said Krug.

Tide's parent company, Procter and Gamble, issued the following statement:

"Our laundry pacs are a highly concentrated detergent meant to clean clothes and they’re used safely in millions of households every day. They should be only used to clean clothes and kept up, closed and away from children. They should not be played with, whatever the circumstance is, even if it is meant as a joke,”

In recent years, the company even made the pod containers more childproof after reports of children mistaking them for candy and eating them unknowingly.

Dr. Krug says once you eat it, the damage is done.

"There's nothing you can do once you ingested the issue or the substance so it's more of supporting whatever symptoms they have afterwards and then hopefully educating them about trying to do more intelligent things in the future," he said.

If you ever ingest a substance you’re not sure about, call the Indiana Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222.

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