The Scottish Mail on Sunday


Dying for a wee? Why you shouldn’t hold it in


NEXT time you delay a trip to the toilet, spare a thought for Jennifer Strange, who died from holding it in.

In 2007, the mother-of-three from Sacramento, California, entered a radio competitio­n entitled ‘Hold your wee for a Nintendo Wii’. Participan­ts were challenged to drink a bottle of water every 15 minutes for as long as possible without going to the bathroom. The prize was the popular games console, which Strange wanted to give to her children.

The 28-year-old developed a throbbing headache and died a few hours later. A coroner ruled she died of hyponatrem­ia – a water overdose where the water thins sodium levels in the blood. Severe headaches are a warning sign, and if sodium levels reach dangerousl­y low levels, coma and death can occur.

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