Any AirPod owner will be familiar with the neverending fear of losing an earbud by accident. Well, a man in the U.S> has gone one further and swallowed an AirPod in his sleep.
Waking up to an AirPod nightmare
Bradford Gauthier told local TV station 22 News that he had been shovelling snow for hours before going to sleep completely worn out. When he awoke the next morning he had trouble swallowing.
Thinking nothing of it, Gauthier continued his day and went outside to continue shovelling snow. When it came to having a glass of water he found the liquid completely filled up his oesophagus and he couldn’t swallow it.
Gauthier said he often goes to sleep with his AirPods so he can listen to music without waking his young baby. But when he couldn’t find it the next day his family brought up the suggestion that he may have swallowed it.
“They brought it up jokingly at first, but it seemed too coincidental that I would be missing it when I knew I went to bed with it, while I felt a distinct blockage in the centre of my chest,” Gauthier said.
His first port of call was to use the ‘Find My’ device function from Apple to see if he could locate the missing AirPod but the battery was dead.
He went to the emergency room where a chest x-ray showed the lost AirPod stuck in his oesophagus. Gauthier underwent an emergency endoscopy which successfully removed the missing earbud from his body. He said he experienced nothing more than minor discomfort.
Did the AirPod survive?
The $249 question is, of course, did the AirPod still work after this ordeal? Apparently yes, the audio still works but the microphone is in rough shape. Who would’ve guessed AirPods were swallow-proof?
“I think I’m going to either have to look up a YouTube video on how to take it apart and fix it myself, or replace the mic, or just pick up a new one,” Gauthier told NBC 10 Boston News.
Gauthier said he hoped his story would be a warning about the potential dangers of sleeping with your wireless headphones.
This is indeed an AirPod horror story, but it’s not the first time it’s happened. In 2019, a man in Taiwan swallowed an AirPod in his sleep and had to wait for it to pass through his digestive system to remove it from his body.
When they found it the earbud still had 41% battery.