We had an incident at Silverado Middle School where students were playing “Tap Out”. A victim had to be transported to the emergency room for loss of consciousness. It was found that at least 15 students had been playing this at the school for a month. They heard about the game from a student at another middle school. Please advise your staff about this and have them keep an eye out during recesses and lunch. Stop the students immediately if you see them doing this. The consequence may be death.
What every parent should know to keep their kids from participating.
By Jenny Suniga
Thursday, March 29, 2007 at 3:13 p.m.
What is the Choking Game?
According to the website Stop The Choking Game , the Choking Game achieves a brief high or euphoric state by stopping the flow of oxygen containing blood to the brain. Sometimes children choke each other until the person being choked passes out. The pressure on the arteries is then released and blood flow to the brain resumes causing a "rush" as consciousness returns. There are variations of this activity which involve hyper-ventilating until the participant loses consciousness. There is a lesser chance of death but it is still not safe. Playing this game in any form causes the permanent and cumulative death of large numbers of brain cells. The variation in blood pressure may also cause strokes, seizures, and retinal damage.
The danger becomes even greater when a ligature is used and the activity is performed by a lone child. If the child loses consciousness and there is no one there to immediately release the pressure, he is unable to help himself. The child will suffer brain damage and death certainly after three minutes. Some of those who have died were alone for as little as 15 minutes before someone found them and it was already too late. This activity can claim a child's life the first time it is played. Click to see a list of some of the victims of this activity.
Parents and counselors should be on the lookout for
Any suspicious mark on the side of the neck, sometimes hidden by means of a turtleneck, a scarf or a permanently turned-up collar
Changes in personality, such as overly aggressive or agitated.
Any kind of strap, a rope or a belt lying about near the child without any reason – questions about such objects are often eluded.
Headaches, sometimes excruciatingly bad ones, loss of concentration, a flushed face.
Bloodshot eyes or any other noticeable signs of stress on the eyes.
A thud in the bedroom or against a wall – meaning a fall in cases of solitary practices.
Any questions about the effects, sensations or dangers of strangulation
If I think My child may be doing this, what can I Do?
Supervise the child very closely. Dispose of items that could be employed for this purpose. Warn your child about this activity. They often don't know that this activity can kill them or leave them brain damaged. Alert school officials so that they can monitor your child. Often other students may also be participating. Consider professional counseling and support for your child and your family. Check that siblings are not involved in this activity. Consider alerting your child's friends parents.
What Can I Do to Help Stop This?
According to Stop The Choking Game, talk to the children in your life, parents and everyone you know who works with children Make sure they understand why it is so dangerous to participate in this activity. Even if they survive, people who participate are killing brain cells each time they do this. The damage done is permanent and cumulative. In addition, a child choking another child who is injured or dies, may be indicted and prosecuted for his part in the death or injury. Insist that the school districts in your area provide education about this activity as a part of the risky behavior curriculum (drugs and alcohol, etc.). Doing so insures that all children are warned of the dangers of this activity. This should start as early as elementary school as older children seem to pass this activity to younger ones.
The Choking Game by any of the following aliases