TikTok: Doctor warns about the dangers of the viral ‘bone smashing’

In a video posted on his social media, the plastic surgeon alerts to the dangers of TikTok’s latest bizarre viral trend: ‘bone smashing’.

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In a long list of bizarre trends, a new craze circulating on TikTok manages to be even stranger and more dangerous than many others that have already gone viral. Called ‘bone smashing,’ this disconcerting practice involves people repeatedly striking their bones, typically those in their cheekbones or jaws, with hard objects like hammers and bottles in an attempt to reshape their facial features.

“Honestly, I never thought I would have to come here and say this, but please do not intentionally break the bones of your face,” said Dr. Prem Tripathi, a plastic surgeon from San Francisco, in a video posted on his social media.


The specialist warned that broken or fractured bones can heal on their own, but they may not heal properly and could lead to disfigurement. “If you don’t have the genetics for a ‘strong’ jawline, unfortunately, you need to consult a professional,” Tripathi explains in the clip.

While breaking bones may seem like an absurd idea, this trend appears to be based on the 19th-century theory of German surgeon and anatomist Julius Wolff. According to him, bones are constantly remodeling, with old or damaged bones continuously being reabsorbed and replaced by new ones.

According to Wolff, the application of mechanical force or physical stress to the bones can actually increase the rate of this remodeling and, in the process, result in stronger and thicker bones. However, critics have noted that the theory and bone destruction are oversimplifications of how bones work and can lead to serious lifelong problems.


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