Physicians warn against 'bone smashing'

A viral TikTok trend is encouraging young people to slam a blunt object on their face with the desire of changing their face shapes — and physicians are advising against the practice known as "bone smashing," CBS News reported Nov. 6. 

The trend is marketed on a false belief that fractured bones will strengthen in their regrowth, according to Ben Schultz, MD, a reconstructive plastic surgeon at Baltimore-based LifeBridge Health. 

"So, we know from healing that any scarred tissue, whether it's bone or skin or muscle, will actually only ever achieve 80% of the original strength," Dr. Schultz told CBS News. "Which is why if people have injuries, they will often reinjure the previous sites."

People who strike their face in the hopes of gaining a chiseled look might be met with nerve damage, airway obstruction, suffocation or blindness, he warned. The act can also lead to osteophytes. 

As of the morning of Nov. 7, hashtags related to the trend have more than 400 million views on TikTok.

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