12-year-old boy dies after playing new ‘fainting game’ – now mom sends warning to all parents

The rise of social media has brought with it a wave of viral crazes easily spread around the world. Some of these games – the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge being one – both raise awareness and promote charity for significant worldly issues.

Some, however, have been proven to be as dangerous as they are popular, particularly amongst school children. Only earlier this year did thousands of children put their lives at risk by taking part in the ‘Tide Pod’ craze, one which involved them eating capsules of washing detergent.

Now, there’s a new trend on the horizon, and one mom is warning everyone about it after tragically losing her son…

Tua Muai was just 12-years-old when he died. His brain had been starved of oxygen whilst he took part in the new ‘fainting game’ and lost consciousness. His mom, Celeste Muai, is now spreading the word in a bid to try and prevent more casulaties.

Celeste said: “There’s nothing that can take the pain away, but if it can save one child, one parent, one family … then it will make more sense.

“He was just playing a game and he didn’t think things through.”


After playing the game with his school friends, Tua was rendered unconscious and later died in hospital. The ‘fainting game’ involves cutting off oxygen to the brain in a bid to get a small high or rush.

As a result, Celeste spent Mother’s Day (last Sunday in the US) planning her son’s funeral. As per Fox13 Salt Lake City, she said: “I spent Mother’s Day planning my son’s funeral, writing his obituary, instead of having breakfast or flowers or ‘I love you, Mom.

“Try to imagine what it would be like and multiply that by infinity and that’s kind of what it’s like…there’s no words.”


As with most social crazes, the game is being passed to many children online through videos and word of mouth. Apparently, such a game has existed for a long time, but it’s getting a resurgence lately through viral videos showing kids playing it. The dangers lie in the fact that it can cause cerebral hypoxia, which is a deprivation of oxygen to your brain.

Effects can include dizziness or a slight euphoria, but it can also result in loss of consciousness.

A fundraising page has been set up to help pay for Tua’s funeral, in which he is described as “A light and joy to all who know him.”

A tragic story indeed, but one that can perhaps be used as the warning Celeste is intending. Kids will always be kids, and so it’s crucial to impress upon them the importance of thinking of their own safety before doing something they’ve seen online or heard about from a friend. 

If you have children, or know anyone with children, share this story to spread the word. Together we can work to ensure this doesn’t happen again!



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