Drinkware, an independent UK charity is calling on parents to take the lead against the extreme drinking game Neknominate on social media sites.
This new extreme and deadly drinking game involves people filming themselves consuming large amounts of alcohol rapidly, then nominating someone to continue the game, and posting the video on Facebook and YouTube.
The game which is believed to come out of Australia is now going global and deadly. Reports have indicated that at least five people under the age of 30 have died due to the game. The casualties include Bradley Eames, age 20, who mixed tea bags and gin together and died four days later. It is believe his is the fifth death related to the game.
New research conducted for Drinkware has been released today that confirms the effect in peer pressure in encouraging children to drink. Ipsos MORI conducted the research among children aged 00 to 17 in the UK focusing on the role of peer pressure and social media in encouraging children to drink alcohol underage. The research suggested that over third of 10 to 17 year olds who use social networking sites report seeing images of their friends drunk, leading to concerns that younger children seeing these images could feel pressure to get involved.
Elaine Hindal, Chief Executive at alcohol education charity Drinkaware commented “I’m sure we can all remember feeling invincible as a child and keen not be left out of the crowd, but as parents, we know the real danger of a trend which encourages young people to take unnecessary risks and to put pressure on their friends to do the same. “
“Parents have more influence than they think. We want to protect our children from the pressure to drink alcohol underage and can play a vital role in doing so by giving them the confidence to say no. It’s never too early to talk to your children about the risks of drinking underage and to remind them that if they choose not to drink they will not be alone.
“Young people should also be reminded that the behavior of some older teens taking part in social media drinking games is not something to be copied – it can have serious implications. We believe it’s better to have the “alcohol chat” in the living room than in A&E.”
Dr. Sara Jarvis, MD, medical advisor to Drinkware had commented on the videos and photos posted online concerning social media drinking game, “Young people often say they feel peer pressure to drink to fit in, but competitions to drink excessively in a short space of time can be dangerous and this should not come as a surprise.
“Quite apart from the risk of accident or injury as a result of drinking to excess, there is another aspect to these online drinking games which is the “cybershame” some young people may experience. Drinkaware research shows nearly half (47%) of 18-24 year olds admitted un-tagging drunk photos of themselves that they didn’t want others to see. However there is still a chance that these photos may be seen by universities and prospective employers.
“So while it may seem like a lot of fun at the time, the range of negative consequences are no laughing matter.”
Something just may come out the game.
As reported by Global News, a group of Kelowna high school students decided to change the rules of this extremely dangerous drinking game by providing an act of kindness to the homeless by putting together care packages and handing them out to the homes in downtown Kelowna.
Kelowna Senior Secondary student Terran Wright commented “We decided to go the opposite direction and pay it forward in a positive way, instead of posting something that might impact us negatively in our futures,”, as reported by Global News.
The teens posted their new game of neknomination online at YouTube and have gone viral with 15,567 current views.
Neknomination is now becoming visible in the United States.
A guide for parents on teenage drinking can be viewed online at Health Promotion.