This isn't so much a game as it is a way to sidestep authority. Kids - usually in their teens - cut off their oxygen supply to induce a warm, fuzzy, light-headed sensation similar to feeling high, except that they'll still be able to pass a drug test. The key to this "game" (also known as the fainting game, seven minutes to heaven, tapping out, or sleeper hold) is to relieve the pressure just before losing consciousness. However, by cutting off their air supply with belts, ropes, or their bare hands, kids are putting themselves at risk for brain damage, stroke, and even death. While your kids may pass a drug test with flying colors, there are ways to tell if they're finding that feeling in a different way. According to the Mayo Clinic, clues that your child is playing the choking game include unexplained bruises around the neck, frequent headaches, bloodshot eyes, and disorientation.
Children who regularly play the choking game may not be doing it to please their peers--their behavior may signal something more serious, says Weber. "[These are] children who seem withdrawn, depressed, and who are not doing well in other activities." Weber recommends that parents who suspect their child of playing the choking game consult a psychologist.