11-Year-Old Boy Goes Into Cardiac Arrest After Dangerous Tik-Tok Challenge 

Tragedy struck the United Kingdom this week when 11-year-old Tommie-Lee Gracie Billington passed away from cardiac arrest after he and his friend attempted a popular TikTok challenge known as “chroming,” a term which originated from the sniffing of chrome-based paint, but now more broadly refers to the inhalation of volatile substances recreationally. The boy was found unconscious, rushed to a nearby hospital and later pronounced dead. 

The young boy’s family has since voiced their opinions on the trend, with his devastated grandmother making a statement, saying, “He died instantly after a sleepover at a friend’s house. The boys had tried the TikTok craze ‘chroming.’ Tommie-Lee went into cardiac arrest immediately and died right there and then. The hospital did everything to try and bring him back, but nothing worked. He was gone.” 

The family has called on social media platforms to “do more” to keep children safe on their platforms, even calling on a shutdown of the platforms to prevent more children from dying of dangerous challenges. 

Billington’s grandmother stated that on behalf of their family: “We want to get TikTok taken down and no children to be allowed on any social media under 16 years of age. This is breaking us all, but we want to help save other children’s lives and give families awareness to keep their children safe.” 

This trend has become a household one where the subjects will find common household items like aerosol cans, nail polish remover, paint solvents, and household cleaning products and inhale them to get high. 

The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center warned families about the trend, stating, “Hydrocarbons are present in many different household products, including aerosol paint, paint thinner, motor fuel, and glue. Inhaling them can create a high, which causes many people to use them as a drug of abuse. People may inhale the chemicals in different ways — breathing in the fumes directly or using something like a bag or rag.” 

Unfortunately, Billington is not the only child to fall victim to this dangerous trend. There are four separate reports from 2021-2024 of cases where young adults have died from chroming. 

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