Plymouth Schools Warn Parents about the 'Cinnamon Challenge'

Is it harmless fun, a stupid dare, or something more dangerous? Plymouth School officials warn parents about the viral video and possible dangers of swallowing a tablespoon of cinnamon.

A spoonful of sugar it is not.

Recently, the Bridgewater-Raynham school district warned parents of the potential dangers of a YouTube meme called the cinnamon challenge.

Plymouth Public School officials are seconding that warning in Superintendant Gary Maestas's weekly email.

"We would like to make you aware of what this is so that our children will not be at risk," Maestas writes in his "Friday Notes."

In this challenge, people try to swallow a spoonful of the spice without drinking water, in the videos, this always results in choking and coughing by the participant as the cinnamon apparently burns their mouths and noses.

Cinnamon is naturally caustic, meaning it burns and even corrodes body tissue. Nationwide, there have even been several reports of children needing ventilators to breath after the challenge....

Please warn your children about this and keep them safe.

Cheif of Respiratory Therapy at Casey Roderick said, after watching the challenge on YouTube, that it can cause severe respiratory problems.

"What I withnessed is that they are constantly trying to swallow and it’s difficult to do so," Roderick said. "When you swallow there’s a piece of tissue called the epiglottis that flops between the trachea and esophagus, when you swallow this flops over the trachea. From a respiratory standpoint if your constantly swallowing you can’t take a breath, and when you finally do take a breath, that cinnamon will go down the trachea, and that can cause aspiration."

Aspiration is caused when a foreign body, whether food, cinnamon, or something else, can cause infection when the body responds to attack it. Roderick said the infection can become aspiration pnemonia if left too long.

"Even in young people, it can be a serious problem," Roderick said.

"Added to that, cinnamon burns tissue, and that makes it even worse will burn the lung tissue. So, from a respiratory standpoint, it's really dangerous."

Roderick said there is an added danger to asthmatics.

"Any insult ot the lungs might trigger an asthma attack," he said. 


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