November 24, 2006
Toledo, Ohio -- It's dangerous. It's deadly. It's called by many different names-- Pass Out, the Pass Out Game, California High, and Black-Out. It's also called Purple Dragon and Suffocation Roulette.
Knowing what to look for can go a long way toward avoiding tragedy.
The 8th grade Algebra class at St. Pious school in west Toledo is raising money and awareness about a potentially deadly game kids their age are playing--- The Choking Game.
"I think it's all related to peer pressure," said one teen.
"I think it's pretty stupid and immature that you'd do this to yourself," said another.
All parents should be aware of it. Holly Davis lost a young relative who died trying to play it alone. "Why would he do something like this, because he knew it was stupid, and I thought he knew he could die from it," she said.
So she's spear-heading an awareness campaign called KAPOW at her school. It stands for Kids Against Pass Out.
We saw video of this disturbing trend on the personal video web-site U-Tube, so we can't guarantee it's authenticity. But this is video your kids can watch 24-7. And real or not, kids are copying the behavior.
Most often, these kids have another person choke them, pressing on their carotid artery, cutting off the blood supply to the brain, creating a quick buzz, or head rush.
Pediatric emergency medicine specialist Dr. Eugene Izsak says the high is quick, free and is easily very dangerous. "If you're holding something around your neck, or someone else is choking you, they may not let go at the right time, and therefore, death can occur."
Kids can get so addicted, they try it themselves at home, alone, using belts, scarves, bike chains, that's when kids can die.
There are also several warning signs you can look for. Bruising around the neck, and most obvious-
If you realize your child is doing this, the main thing you're probably dealing with is an addictive behavior, and you need to get them psychological help.
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