TikTok has grown exponentially in the last couple of years. Starting out initially as a lip-sync series, it has since expanded to include a lot of different video types. And the most infamous of them all are the challenges. Some of them are innocuous, a little embarrassing, but not too harmful. Others cause noticeable pain or discomfort, to a degree it’s not even funny to watch. And one such challenge was so bad that a gynecologist actually needed to speak up about it.
The Ice Cube Challenge
The name of this new TikTok challenge is the ice cube challenge. Celebrities have promoted challenges like the mannequin challenge and the similarly named ice bucket challenge before, but they won’t promote anything like this. One was harmless and the other was for charity. This one might put you in the emergency room.
The ice cube challenge itself, is pretty simple on paper. It simply involves placing an ice cube somewhere in your body, then the reaction in filmed and shared. Although, some women took this challenge a little bit too far.
Where It’s Going
As you may have assumed, some women have taken to inserting ice cubes into their vaginas as a part of the challenge. Which sounds… uncomfortable to say the least.
Something important to remember about this challenge is that everything has to be filmed. That allows for these TikToks to become incredibly racy incredibly quickly.
To be fair, TikTok doesn’t allow for sexually explicit material on the app. So, they can’t actually show the insertion of the ice cube without the video being removed. So, it is possible that all of these women have actually been faking it.
To be fair, some of the reactions of these women, even from the neck up, are far too expressive to be faked. And that’s why the doctors may be worried.
Some of the women that have done this challenge actually claim to have had some benefits from the ice cube. They say that they help with infections mainly, something that isn’t actually backed by science.
The person that finally spoke out about this challenge’s danger was gynecologist, Staci Tanouye. She hijacked the ice cube challenge hashtag to explain how it could be dangerous.
A Second Opinion
Another gynecologist, Dr. Jennifer Lincoln, has also stated how dangerous it can be to use ice cubes in this way. She used the ice cube challenge hashtag in the same way Dr. Tanouye had.
In The Bedroom
Lincoln took the time to debunk a few myths about ice cubes, including their usage in the bedroom. While she didn’t say not to use them as a part of foreplay, she advised that ice cubes can get rather sharp edges as they melt and to just be careful with them.
According to some TikTokers, the ice cube challenge can help out with depression and anxiety. How? Well, no one knows how that would work theoretically. It doesn’t matter that much since, according to actual doctors, the ice cube challenge does nothing for your mental health.
The general idea that the ice cube challenge can assist in your mental health is from the idea of self-gratification. Some research has shown that it has positive effects, allowing for stress relief, improved mood, and greater relaxation. However, it isn’t a cure for depression.
Another idea that TikTokers had from doing the ice cube challenge was that it would make them “tighter”. It shouldn’t be obvious that Dr. Lincoln had no problem debunking this one, saying “How? [Ice is] not going to freeze it into a tighter shape.”
According to some TikTokers, the ice cubes can actually be used to treat warts. And that’s just… incorrect. Warts can be treated using freezing, but doctors use liquid nitrogen for that. And liquid nitrogen is many times colder than liquid water.
Some TikTokers have even claimed that the ice cube challenge can help prevent infections “down there”. Well, for that, the pH of water and the vagina are rather different. For those of you that are unaware, pH measures acidity and base levels of a liquid. 8-14 are considered bases, while 6 or lower are considered acidic. And pure water is a neutral seven. In comparison to ice’s pH (which is just frozen water), the vagina’s pH is four, a far more acidic number. And when a base and an acid collide, they start to cancel out. So, water making things less acidic would actually make you more prone to infection instead of less.
Dr. Lincoln’s last words on the ordeal was, “I think ice cubes are great. For drinks and smoothies, that sort of thing. [But] let’s not forget in pre-school when Johnny stuck a bead up his nose. And then Timmy did it because he thought it was cool. And next thing you know, Billy’s in the ER because he’s got two beads stuck up there. Let’s just stop and think before we do crazy stuff.”
A Learning Experience
On the bright side, Drs. Tanouye and Lincoln have managed to clear up a lot of misconceptions. Their followers have really been taught what not to do when it comes with ice cubes. As it turns out, the only thing they’re really good for is what they were intended for, keeping cool.
An Actual Benefit
If you’re at all disappointed by the fact that you can’t improve your physical or mental health with ice, just look at the other side of the spectrum instead. As it turns out, a glass of warm water in the morning has some nice health benefits.
The general idea is that you should drink eight cups of water a day, but those cups would be better warm than cold. For starters, a warm cup of water will help you improve your digestion. It helps to break down food in the stomach much faster than cold liquids.
A well-hydrated body can also have an improved nervous system. It helps you brain, spine, and other parts of your central-nervous system respond correctly to stimulus.
Water by itself has many benefits to the body, which is why it’s probably the most precious resource. It has so many functions to help keep someone alive and functioning. However, all those benefits can just as quickly be thrown out the window when you freeze and put it someplace it’s not supposed to be. So just remember to drink water, stay healthy, and don’t shove ice up where the sun doesn’t shine.