Friends of the Howell Alliance shared the following valuable information for parents.
A new American Academy of Pediatrics study, Pediatric Edible Cannabis Exposure and Acute Toxicity: 2017-2021, has found a sharp rise in the number of children who accidentally ingested marijuana edibles.
From 2017 through 2021, there were 7,000+ confirmed cases of children younger than age 6 ingesting edibles in the U.S. There was a 1,375% increase in the number of cases from 2017 to 2021, jumping from 200 cases in 2017 to 3,000+ in 2021. Almost 25% of these cases required hospitalization. (https://publications.aap.org/pediatrics/article/151/2/e2022057761/190427/Pediatric-Edible-Cannabis-Exposures-and-Acute)
With the legalization of the adult use of marijuana in NJ and other states, these findings are very concerning, as the rise of these cases directly coincides with more states legalizing medical and recreational cannabis use.
Marijuana edibles packages often resemble familiar brands of candies, cookies, and other sweets and look appealing to young children. Since the brain develops until at least age 25, any marijuana use prior to this age can be very harmful, especially with exposure to cannabis products with high THC potencies.
Cannabis exposure can also lead to poisoning and causing problems with breathing, sleepiness, dizziness, and walking.
Adults must ensure all forms of cannabis are kept in a secure place, out of the reach of children.
(The information above is from an announcement by Angelo M. Valente, Executive Director of Partnership for a Drug-Free NJ: https://www.drugfreenj.org/)