What is the Blue Whale Challenge? - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

What is the Blue Whale Challenge?

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -

A game circulating on social media has school leaders and police warming parents around the world. 

It's called the Blue Whale Challenge. 

It targets young teens who may be on the brink of suicide 

The challenge consists of 50 tasks. They start out innocent but gradually get worse. 

A teen is challenged to carve a blue whale into their arm, the 50th and final step is suicide. 

The new trend has even caught the attention of Instagram 

A warning pops up when users search the phrase. 

Mental health professionals like Jason Reich at CHI Memorial Integrative Medicine Associates said sometimes teens perceive things in life differently because they typically don't reach mental maturity until the age of 25. 

"With their thought processes, they are not really fully developed until around that age, which is why we probably see the suicide rate drop around 25. More people tend to then have fully developed psyche and mind in a way that allows them to see the consequences for behavior," he said.

Channel 3 checked with school districts in our area. 

There have not been any reports of the Blue Whale Challenge in the Tennessee Valley but teachers we talked to have heard of it. 

With schools letting out for the summer, school counselors like Anna Millard say it's important for parents to know what their kids are doing online. 

"It's like inviting a stranger into your home, it's very important to know what their kids are doing," Millard said, "Make sure that you're following them. If they block you, chances are there's a reason."

Experts also encourage parents to look for a change in behavior in their children. 

For more on what to look for, click HERE.

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