The commitment to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) launched into wheezy new heights this week as a young girl completed the Ice Bucket Challenge while still on anesthesia.
Meghan Waterman had her wisdom teeth removed one hour before she decided to dump water on herself to help raise awareness of ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, as part of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
The procedure to remove wisdom teeth is meant to improve a patient’s oral health, as it helps prevent bacterial infections that could cause bad breath and gum disease. Even with a swollen, bleeding mouth, Waterman apparently wanted to help others before she finished helping herself.
Waterman was nominated by her friends the day earlier, and after the tooth extraction, she found herself alone in the kitchen chatting online with a friend who reminded her about the nomination.
Hazy from anaesthesia, Waterman slurred through her speech and in the midst of voicing her nervousness that her mom would come home, she ended up pouring the ice water onto her chest.
“This is for the people l hope I can help out,” Waterman said in the video, which garnered nearly 3 million views since it was posted on August 21. She said she barely remembers making the video.
The viral Internet trend of dumping a bucket of ice water on your head – or body – and nominating friends has gained popularity across the country, raising almost $80 million for the ALS Association in less than a month.
Among other issues, those with ALS deal with oral health problems since their muscles lose the ability to help them perform even routine activities such as brushing and flossing teeth.
Though unintentionally, Waterman helped spotlight the disease as well as dental health priorities.