A six-year-old British boy who ate his bedroom, including the walls, has been given a new one with the help of some very generous supporters.
Zach Tahir suffers from Pica, a rare disorder that fuels an appetite for non-nutritive substances. People affected commonly experience cravings for things like dirt, sand, chalk, hair, and other typically inedible items. The condition usually presents itself in children and women, and can be especially prevalent during pregnancy.
According to The Daily Mail, Zach will attempt to eat nearly any object he comes across. He has a tendency to gravitate toward materials such as moss, paper, clothes, stones, mud, and thread.
Rachel Horn, the young boy’s mother, described his chewing behavior:
“There’s no limit to what he will try and eat. We don’t know what appeals to him about the objects around him but there’s nothing we can do to stop him trying to chew through anything and everything.”
Zach’s chewing tendencies escalated when he began to eat parts of his bedroom. He chewed through the linings of two sleeping bags, gnawed on his furniture and window blinds, and finally moved to the plaster on his walls.
The consumption of inedible items by pica sufferers can be harmful. The digestibility of certain objects can lead to internal damage and there is a risk of poisoning depending on the chemical makeup of items consumed.
It’s an issue that concerns Zach’s family, who worry that the boy’s incessant chewing will lead to injury. They reached out through Facebook and Twitter in an effort to raise the funds needed to build Zach a new, safer bedroom. They received donations and encouragement from people who spread the word about the boy who ate his bedroom.
MSN writes that the family succeeded in raising enough money to cover their out-of-pocket portion of the $55,000 project. Just in time for his birthday, Zach was presented with his inedible bedroom, which was constructed of durable items nearly impossible to chew.
According to Rachel Horn, her son is delighted with his new room:
“He has slept in it for three nights and he’s loved it.”
You can follow the story about the boy who ate his bedroom by visiting Zach’s official Facebook page.