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  1. #1
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    Teen's Death in 'Choking Game' Focuses Attention on Dangerous Practice

    The "choking game" has been around for years, resurfacing every generation or so, traveling by word of mouth among kids looking for a thrill. Now, the death of a Frederick County teenager has added to fears that the practice, sped along by the Internet, has become more common and deadly.

    William C. Bowen Jr., a computer-savvy high school student who was involved in his church and working toward his Eagle Scout badge, died of accidental asphyxiation March 14 after wrapping a terry-cloth sash around his neck, law enforcement officials confirmed last week.

    <snip>

    There is scant research on the practice, but medical and forensic experts estimate that 250 to 1,000 young people die in the United States each year from some variant of the choking game. Many are reported as suicides. One university researcher has estimated that nearly a third of adolescent hangings could be attributed to some form of the practice.

    more at the link http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...040101183.html


    I know that we have had threads on here before about the "Choking Game". I felt that this latest death needed to be posted. Everyone with young kids needs to talk to them about the dangers of this.
    Retired 08/03/03

  2. #2
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    OneLostGrl is offline I'm going against the grain- I'm going sane
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow205
    The "choking game" has been around for years, resurfacing every generation or so, traveling by word of mouth among kids looking for a thrill. Now, the death of a Frederick County teenager has added to fears that the practice, sped along by the Internet, has become more common and deadly.

    William C. Bowen Jr., a computer-savvy high school student who was involved in his church and working toward his Eagle Scout badge, died of accidental asphyxiation March 14 after wrapping a terry-cloth sash around his neck, law enforcement officials confirmed last week.

    <snip>

    There is scant research on the practice, but medical and forensic experts estimate that 250 to 1,000 young people die in the United States each year from some variant of the choking game. Many are reported as suicides. One university researcher has estimated that nearly a third of adolescent hangings could be attributed to some form of the practice.

    more at the link http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...040101183.html


    I know that we have had threads on here before about the "Choking Game". I felt that this latest death needed to be posted. Everyone with young kids needs to talk to them about the dangers of this.
    Shadow205-

    Thanks for posting this and reminding all of us parents to talk to our kids about the choking game. I think a lot of parents say "My child wouldn't do this- he/she knows better" and sadly this just isn't so anymore.

    I always remind myself that no matter how good my boys are, if they are not in front of my face they are capable of anything.

  3. #3
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    I've been hearing more and more about this. It's so scary, but besides talking to your kids about not doing it are there any warning signs that they're practicing this?


    Happiness...consists in giving, and in serving others.
    - Henry Drummond

  4. #4
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    We seem to hear about a few of these deaths every year. Very very sad.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeana (DP)
    We seem to hear about a few of these deaths every year. Very very sad.
    Jeana,
    I thought it was only a few a year too until I read the above article. Accodring to it:

    but medical and forensic experts estimate that 250 to 1,000 young people die in the United States each year from some variant of the choking game.
    Retired 08/03/03

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paradise
    I've been hearing more and more about this. It's so scary, but besides talking to your kids about not doing it are there any warning signs that they're practicing this?
    http://www.nbc10.com/news/4992556/de...subid=10101521 (See Related Resources at the bottom of the article for more links on the "choking game".


    "Here are some of the clues to look for that would indicate your child might be experimenting with the choking game."

    Bloodshot eyes

    Unusual marks on neck

    Belts and ropes with unusual knots found in your child's bedroom and tied to furniture

    --------------------------------------
    Choking game, deadly outcome

    http://www.thetandd.com/articles/200...4791696965.txt

    Dr. Thomas Andrew, an expert on the dangers of this high-risk game, says children play it by squeezing a friend’s chest or neck to cut off the flow of oxygen. “While the brain is deprived of oxygen, you’ll get this sensation of light-headedness, perhaps numbness and the tingling. And if all goes as planned, the pressure’s then released. Blood goes torrenting up those carotid arteries and it goes into the brain, and you have this big rush.”

    The rush is what children seem to crave. Some want it so much that they are now often playing the game alone, using shoelaces, ropes, dog leashes, bed sheets and belts. The results can be fatal and can be easily confused with suicide.

    Dr. Andrew demonstrated how children playing the game alone have only moments to undo the choke-hold around their neck before passing out and explained gravely, if the child fails to loosen the noose himself, “should he not be able to reach it, and lose consciousness and fall forward, that pressure on his neck is now even tighter. It will deprive the blood flow — leading to a fatal result.”

    Four years ago, an 11-year-old from New Hampshire and 14-year-old from Wisconsin died under similar circumstances. More recently, a 13-year-old California boy and a 10-year-old Eastern Idaho boy were likely victims of the game. Experts say signs parents and friends should look for are commonly severe headaches, marks on the neck, bloodshot eyes and closed doors.

    The “would haves” “could haves” and “should haves” are not going to help bring these dead children back to life. It’s too late for that. But let’s hope this story educates parents to look for the warning signs to keep children from playing this game. These sad examples should teach children not to experiment with stupid tricks, which waste their most valuable gift — life. (More at link)

    -------------------------------
    choking game Information From Answers.com--(Wikipedia)

    http://www.answers.com/topic/choking-game

    The choking game, also commonly known as the fainting game, is not a game in the traditional sense but an activity involving the inducement of unconsciousness or near unconsciousness by restriction of the supply of oxygen to the brain. The attractions are that it can induce a brief sense of euphoria, it is done as a dare or game of chicken, it is reported to enhance erotic feelings, it is amusing to some to watch others losing consciousness or behaving erratically, the prospect of an altered state of consciouness or, more recently, copycatting elements of the film Flatliners. The shortlived euphoric effects are generally the result of hypocapnia or hypoxia and not adrenaline as commonly believed. The activity has been passed down for generations in schoolyards, summer camps and neighborhoods typically by 9-14 year old boys and is responsible for a large number of deaths and permanent disabilities. The activity is traditional and world-wide but became prominent in the United States early 2005 when a number of cases were publicised. (Much more at link)

  7. #7
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    In the mid 80s, I was a Girl Scout and often participated in camp sleepovers. This was a common occurrance back then. I clearly remember a friend of mine standing in front of everyone, talking a deep breath and then someone would push on her chest and she would faint. I was terrified and never did it. I am sure everyone's parents would have been shocked had they known this was going on.

    I don't think this is the exact same game, but definitely similar and is cause for concern.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Masterj
    In the mid 80s, I was a Girl Scout and often participated in camp sleepovers. This was a common occurrance back then. I clearly remember a friend of mine standing in front of everyone, talking a deep breath and then someone would push on her chest and she would faint. I was terrified and never did it. I am sure everyone's parents would have been shocked had they known this was going on.

    I don't think this is the exact same game, but definitely similar and is cause for concern.

    70s too. We tried it a couple times. Very very scarey. I'm going to be talking to both of my youngsters about this. The thing is, we, as parents, hate the thought that we might be putting ideas in their heads that they don't know about, but then I guess we need to snap out of it and realize they know too much about too many things that scare us.

  9. #9
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    A very nice boy in our town died on Mother's Day. People said he had committed suicide. It was very troubling to me since he was very active in doing things with his dad and his grampa, fishing, snowmobiling, 4 wheeling etc and seemed like a somewhat shy but not unhappy kid... I've never heard of him being in any trouble whatsoever. Rumors were that he was unpopular at school and that is why he hanged himself. Though I didn't know him well I have talked to him a few times while doing business with his dad. When I talked to him he seemed normal and friendly and would excitedly show you his latest project...an antique outboard motor he was rebuilding or his ice racer (snowmobile) or he would take my son to jump on the trampoline while we talked to his dad. He had shown me his latest project just 2 weeks prior to my reading his obituary in the paper. He always impressed me as a nice kid, something that can be rare in teenage boys. Now however I see that he is listed on an internet website as a likely victim of the choking game ... I had wondered myself if it could have been that instead of suicide.

    I guess it is somewhat of a relief to know that he probably didn't kill himself in a fit of despair and unhappiness....but it is just as tragic and sad that he simply make the mistake of playing this dangerous stupid game. My own son is younger and sort of the same kind of kid, quiet, sensitive, likes fishing and doing things with dad and mom... I guess I better talk to him about the choking game but more than talking I am going to keep an eye out for any clues...cause kids don't always listen to us when we try to warn them about dangerous things like drinking, drugs, cigarettes, gangs and the choking game.

    From reading personal stories on the website about the choking game just talking doesn't always work. One boy died a day after his mother warned him never to play the game because of how dangerous it was. Many kids played the choking game while their parents were only a room away and the parents never knew what was happening. It's so sad.... the pictures of all those smiling faces that were lost to this horrible game....how devestated the family members are that find their precious children dead.

    http://www.dylan-the-boy-blake.com/C...e_Victims.html

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeana (DP)
    70s too.
    And the 60s. (Or so they tell me. )

    But as stupid as these activities were, they don't seem to have involved tying things around one's neck. That really IS stupid.


  11. #11
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    It's so unfortunate that young people have the feeling of nothing bad can happen to them that they all seem to have.

    I think that's part of the reason they engage in dangerous activites and things they have been warned and warned about.

    Also peer pressure is such a big factor.



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