Japanese Eyeball Licking Craze Linked To Spread Of Disease

By Jessica Rawden 2 years ago
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A trend that started in Japan began innocuously enough, but now is raising concerns about germs and the spread of disease. There are plenty of videos available on the Internet that showcase the oddball leisure activity that is eyeball licking, but as the trend becomes more widespread, issues ranging from conjunctivitis, better known as pink eye, to potentially more serious eye issues, including eye-chlamydia have sprung up.

Japan has been known for many random, cool, and sometimes weird trends, but eye-licking may take the cake in terms of oddball behavior. The behavior that is spreading throughout the country is going by the name oculolinctus but has an even more creeptastic name, “worming.” Think about pink tongues flitting out of mouths and making brief contact with the clear and vulnerable surface of the eye. It’s not a pretty image, but some kids seem to be loving it.

The Guardian is reporting the craze may have stemmed from a recent video by the Japanese band Born called “Spiral Eye,” that features the act of worming. However, the craze has grown widespread since the video dropped, with CBS News reporting a classroom survey revealed over 1/3 of children had been involved with eyeball licking at least once.

If you’ve ever fallen ill with conjunctivitis, you know it’s not a picnic. The eye first swells, filling up with germs. The inflammation gives the eye the appearance of a pink and fluffy pile of flesh, which has spawned the term “pink-eye.” The disease is highly contagious without the licking eyeball fetish, but with that added trend, student-aged children are even more susceptible to the disease.

If you are brave enough to catch some kids in action, you can check out the video, below.



Photo Credit @ Shutterstock/ Volodymyr Krasyuk
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