A disturbing new trend is encouraging adults to stick their hands into fire ant mounds while singing ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’. Videos surfacing on social media have shown grown men shouting pro-Trump sentiments and drinking heavily before beginning the challenge. It appears that the challenge winner is determined by the person who can keep their hand in the ant mound the longest. The ants start biting immediately and typically make thier way into the mouths of the challengers before they can finish singing “Gave proof through the night…”
Much like a bee sting, a fire ant sting can be very serious, even lethal. Excessive swelling, itching/redness at the site of the sting, or other symptoms like shortness of breath, thickening of the tongue, and/or profuse sweating are all symptoms of a serious allergic reaction & it requires immediate professional medical attention.
While fire ant bites are extremely painful to everyone, only a small percentage of people are allergic. It’s unclear how this new challenge was started, but experts are advising against participating in this foolish stunt.