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Preventing Unintentional Poisonings from Cannabis Products
Minnesota now allows for the sale of smokable and edible cannabis products and drinks that contain THC. THC is the main compound in cannabis that creates the feeling of being “high.”
Under Minnesota law, products containing THC can only be sold to adults 21 years and older.
The law also states that products must be stored in child-resistant packaging. However, families can take some additional steps to keep everyone safe.
How to prevent poisonings
Many edibles look like candy or other treats. If children gain access to them, it is likely they will eat more than one. Even adults can unknowingly consume edible cannabis products if they are not clearly labeled.
- Store safely. Treat these products like you would other medications or toxic chemicals. Store out of sight and reach of children and in a location they are unable to access, such as a locked cabinet, locked medicine box, or safe. Keep products in the child-resistant containers from the retailer.
- Avoid buying edibles that look like candy.
- Talk to family, friends, and caregivers. Ask anyone whose home your children visit to store THC edibles and other drugs safely.
- Follow these safety tips even without children in the home. Protect curious visitors and pets by keeping THC products locked up and out of sight.
Signs of THC overdose
Anyone can experience a THC overdose, but children are more susceptible. If a child eats or drinks THC products, they may experience the following symptoms:
- Acute behavior changes including sleepiness, euphoria, irritability, anxiety, panic, and/or paranoia
- Rapid heart rate
- Slurred speech
- Dizziness, difficulty walking, poor coordination, and hyperkinesis
- In severe cases of overdose, children can experience hallucinations, an abnormally slow heart rate, and low blood pressure.
What to do if a child eats THC products
If a child eats or drinks a THC product, immediately call a medical professional or the free Poison Control Center hotline at 1-800-222-1222, regardless of symptoms present.
THC products can take from 30 minutes to several hours to have an effect, so even if a child seems fine at the moment, they may need medical treatment. It is important not to wait. The Poison Control Center can help you decide your next steps to care for your child.