Parenting

Most Dangerous Dares and Trends You Need to Warn Your Children About

The Hot Pepper Challenge: Eating the hottest pepper in the world alone can cause a few health scares

The hot pepper challenge, also known as the ghost pepper challenge or chili pepper challenge, involves filming yourself eating a particularly spicy chili pepper then sharing the video on social media. Habanero peppers and ghost peppers are typically chosen for their particularly intense, hot-and-spicy nature. When consumed, chili peppers release capsaicin, an irritant that produces a burning sensation. This intense, heat sensation causes painful burning and profuse sweating. In some cases, eating peppers with high concentrations of capsaicin can even cause vomiting and hallucinations.

Most of the time, the consumption of chili peppers tends to be fairly harmless, resulting in minor, temporary discomfort and possibly nausea. However, because the pepper challenge specifically involves eating the spiciest peppers with the highest concentrations of capsaicin, the challenge has caused a few alarming health scares. In September 2016, five Ohio schoolchildren were hospitalized after eating ghost peppers as part of a challenge. In another incident, a man eating ghost peppers as part of an eating competition experienced a spontaneous esophageal rupture, which tore a hole in the man’s throat and caused his left lung to collapse.

Photo source: Youtube