The spectrum of online challenges ranges from inane to entertaining to baffling to dumb to dangerous. The mannequin challenge was kind of fun. The "no hands" challenge shattered a lot of phone screens. The "duct tape challenge" put a kid in the hospital. The #KylieJennerLipChallenge made everyone lose faith in today's youth.

The "ice and salt challenge"? Not much to say about it except DEAR GOD WHY.

The ice and salt challenge is a social media trend in which teens pour salt on their skin and then hold ice cubes on the salt, which creates a burning sensation. Teens try to see how long they can withstand the burning feeling, which is caused by a chemical reaction between the salt and the ice that produces extreme cold temperatures and can result in frostbite, open wounds, and extremely dangerous infections. Teens post photos of their wounds as part of the challenge. Scarring and skin discoloration can be permanent.


The challenge originated in America (USA! USA!) in 2013, but appears to have migrated abroad as British police departments have issued warnings to parents about the danger of the trend. One boy in Swansea sustained such a horrific burn that doctors considered giving him skin grafts. Here's a photo if you haven't met your quota of extremely disgusting self-inflicted injury visual aids for the day.

It's unclear how many teens are actually taking part in the challenge, but let's hope this trend doesn't go viral anytime soon. Ideally teens will pioneer a new social media trend called the "keep your body safe from physical harm until you reach maturity challenge," but unfortunately, we wouldn't bet on it.

Sources: The Sun