What's The Eraser Challenge? School Warns Parents Their Kids Are Hurting Themselves
A North Carolina school sent a warning to parents about a game called the eraser challenge. Kids dared each other to participate in this latest social media craze. The game, however, posed serious health risks and those who joined only hurt themselves.
Some students who answered the dare ended up with burns, cuts and skin abrasions that school officials started noticing the trend. Kids who played the eraser challenge rubbed an eraser as hard and as fast on their skin, thus causing the abrasions.
Administrators of the East Iredell Middle School issued the warning to parents on Facebook. "It's causing serious burns and we've seen several cases of this at EIMS," the warning stated.
The goal of the game was to see who would last longer, according to Today. Some students also filmed themselves doing the challenge to post on social media for comparison and proof.
Pediatrician Dr. Wendy Sue Swanson told Today the appeal and popularity of the eraser challenge to kids were not surprising. "There's this easy accessibility... when you're thinking about the social dynamics of children trying to belong, trying to get attention and show strength," she said.
It should be noted that the eraser challenge was not something that cropped up on the internet. It has been around for decades. "I still have a scar, I'm 65 years old did this back in the 60s," one commenter said on Facebook.
Some variations of the challenge required kids to rub hand sanitizers on their skin abrasion. Its alcohol content led to more pain and burning sensation.
Last year, a Kansas middle school issued a letter to parents about the eraser challenge, per Fox4KC. In 2014, a Connecticut middle school also warned parents about this craze.
Talking to kids about the risks of the eraser challenge will help stop the trend. "[Parents should] say just because your friend may be doing it, is not a good reason for you to do it," school official Alvie Cater said.