A TikTok viral challenge inspired by the Netflix show Squid game has resulted in three burned children being hospitalized in Sydney.
Westmead Children’s Hospital warns parents of the challenge involving making honeycombs.
The injuries ranged from mild scalds to nerve damage, with all three children requiring ongoing treatment.
The TikTok trend is to carve a shape into homemade honeycomb without breaking it.
The children were burned while hot sugar was melted and transferred to baking paper.
One of the children admitted last month, Aiden, 14, suffered burns to his hand, as well as deep burns and nerve damage to his leg, according to the hospital.
His mother, Helena, said the burns were so severe that doctors feared he would need a skin graft.
The burns will heal on their own, but he will be in a pressure bandage for the next year.
“It’s shocking that an act as simple as making honeycombs can have such dire consequences,” she said.
Acting head of the hospital’s burn department, Erik La Hei, said honeycombs could be dangerous because of the high temperature at which the sugar melts.
“Sugar melts at a temperature higher than what it takes to boil water, so the honeycomb and toffee mixture is both hotter and stickier,” said Dr. La Hei.
“If the mixture is spilled or handled while hot, the increased heat and longer contact time will result in deeper and more severe burns.”
Tips for treating burns
If a child is burned, the burn should be placed under cold running water for 20 minutes. Any clothing or jewelry should be removed.
If the burn is larger than a 20 cent or parents have concerns, they should seek medical help.