B.C.’s youth watchdog says the so-called “choking game” among youth in the province is rare.
Those comments coming after revelations contained in a coroner’s report that troubled teen Nick Lang may have accidentally died while playing the high-risk game.
The 15-year-old was found with a shoelace around his neck while in government care last June.
The B.C. Coroner’s Service can’t determine if his death was intentional because he may have participated in the “choking game”- cutting off oxygen in order to create a feeling of euphoria.
B.C.’s child and youth representative Mary Ellen-Turpel Lafond she has come across other cases involving the so called “choking game.”
“It is rare, I’ve had cases where there has been asphyxiation and its not clear whether a suicide was intended or if it was a game playing gone wrong.”
But she adds changing technology mean the issue is one worth keeping a close eye on.
“It is significant, and with the era of social media and sharing we must always be mindful of what is out there.”
She says parents should be mindful of behavioural changes in their children and notify a family doctor.
LISTEN: Ontario mom who lost her son to the choking game speaks out
An Ontario mother who lost her 12-year-old son to the “choking game” a decade ago says her heart goes out to Nick Lang’s family.
Sharron Grant started an organization called GASP- Games Adolescents Shouldn’t Play, to raise awareness.
“We lose children every week over this and we still don’t seem to be getting anywhere with it, its’ really a shame.”
She says schools should be teaching kids about the dangers of high-risk games, in addition to drugs, alcohol and sex.
“Adolescents play a lot of dangerous games. They don’t believe that death is around the door for them. Because we don’t teach it in school, we teach about drugs and cigarettes and alcohol, but we don’t teach dangerous games that they’re playing.”
Grant says her organization has confirmed at least 1,100 fatalities linked to choking games, mostly in North America.