Dangerous Teen Behaviors: Internet Challenges

From the Show: Healthy Children
Summary: How do you talk to kids about dangerous internet and TikTok challenges?
Air Date: 4/12/22
Duration: 19:49
Host: Melanie Cole, MS
Guest Bio: David Hill, MD
Dr. David Hill is Vice President of Cape Fear Pediatrics in Wilmington, NC, and Adjunct Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at UNC Medical School.

He serves on the executive committees of the North Carolina Pediatric Society and the American Academy of Pediatrics Council On Communications and the Media.

In addition to writing a monthly column for Wilmington Parent Magazine, Dr. Hill writes and records for multiple websites including as,, and He has three children, ages six, nine, and 11.
    Dangerous Teen Behaviors: Internet Challenges
    Just when it seems like these challenges are out of the news, something else pops up.

    Social media rewards outrageous behavior. No one is getting “likes” for cleaning up their bedroom.

    Teens are impulsive. Their brains haven’t developed enough to fully grasp the consequences of dangerous behaviors.

    How do you talk to kids about these dangerous challenges?

    If it says "challenge," it’s probably a horrible idea. There are exceptions, like the ALS ice bucket challenge. But, as a general rule, they should avoid things labeled as challenges.

    Encourage your kids to try to freak you out with the most shocking thing they’ve encountered. You’ve seen some things in your day. The trick is not to freak out when they tell you the crazy thing that happened. Help them build the skill of judging risk by talking about what they witnessed and what could happen next in a similar situation. They have to learn how to think through these things for themselves.

    Listen as Dr. David Hill joins Melanie Cole, MS in this encore episode from 2018, to discuss how to help your kids develop the judgment to keep them away from dangerous behaviors.
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