Tide Pod Challenge! 3 Need to Know Facts!

Written by Matt Wende

Sweeping the internet among teens today is the Tide Pod Challenge, but where did it come from, what risks are involved, and how does the public respond? WatchMojo presents the Top 3 Facts You Need to Know About the Tide Pod Challenge! Watch to find out what made our list!

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In 1988, the world had lofty ambitions for what humans could accomplish in the next thirty years, expecting space tourism and flying cars. And yet now in 2018, we literally have to tell teenagers to not eat soap. Welcome to WatchMojo News, the series where we break down happening news stories that should be on your radar.

For this list, we’re taking a look at everything you need to know about the tide pod challenge.

#3: What Is the Tide Pod Challenge?

We’ve all seen the TV commercials for those little packets you can toss in with your laundry that save laundry-doers the time and hassle of measuring out portions of detergent and fabric softener. As it turns out, the fact that they kind of look like candies is completely inadvertent. Like everything on the internet, it’s difficult to trace the exact origin of the idea to chow down on these, but Consumer Reports issued a warning in 2013 that approximately 7,700 children aged 5 and under had been exposed to the pods since 2012. Some have said that the origins of the internet sensation come from a 2013 message board thread on Straight Dope, as well as The Onion’s 2015 satirical op-ed piece from the perspective of a toddler whose mission was get his hands on those delicious looking pods. Fast forward a few years, and Tide pods have become a meme, with an online challenge issued to consume the pods. Most people participating in the challenge are teenagers, which is a huge surprise… to nobody!

#2: What Happens When You Eat a Tide Pod?

In 2012, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention tagged tide pods as a health risk. You’d think that would be the end of it, but here we are making this video, so… While normal detergent will make you feel sick, the selling point of Tide Pods is that the detergent is in a concentrated form, which of course is worse for you. Consumer Reports has stated that symptoms of eating them include “vomiting, lethargy, and gasping…” and some people have even needed assistance breathing. On top of the numerous warnings against eating them, Tide includes a substance in the pods called Bitrex, also known as denatonium benzoate, which tastes gross, and is designed to stop children from eating them. Upon biting into the pod, the ingredients cause a chemical burn to the inside of your mouth. This will cause swelling, and (obviously) lots of pain. If you then swallow it, the gelatinous substance will move slowly down your throat, causing a burning sensation and difficulty breathing. Since the pods’ release in 2012, there have been six deaths as a direct result of eating Tide Pods.

#1: Is There a Takeaway?

Here at WatchMojo, we conducted a Twitter poll to see what the audience thought of purposefully eating Tide Pods. Of the responses at the time of publishing the post, 5% said it was reckless, 12% said it was stupid and the majority of 69% said it was insanely stupid. 14% percent said it was tempting. So to that 14% of you watching this video, if you could just go ahead and not reproduce, that would be great! We kid, we kid… To vote yourself, check out the link in the description below. The risk of Tide pod consumption is nothing new, as they’ve been known to be hazardous in homes with people suffering from Dementia or Alzheimer's, who have mistaken them for something other than laundry detergent. To summarize for all those not paying attention: it doesn’t matter what they look like, eating Tide pods is a bad idea! If you or anyone you know consumes a Tide pod, drink several cups of water to flush out your system and contact your poison control centre ASAP.
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