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Marijuana Edibles in Oregon – How to Keep Children and Pets Safe

| January 7, 2017

Edible marijuana products containing up to 15 mg of THC are now available for retail sale in registered medical marijuana dispensaries across the state to adults 21 or over.

Although smoking marijuana has the added risk of harmful smoke exposure, eating or drinking marijuana still exposes you to THC, the chemical that makes you high. While you quickly feel the effects of smoked or vaped marijuana, edibles are processed through the liver, and take from 30 minutes up to four hours to take full effect.

Marijuana can make children very sick. According to a recent Journal of American Medical Association study, children’s hospital admissions have increased significantly following the legalization of edible recreational marijuana in Colorado (1).

About the Effects of THC

THC can affect people differently. Members of the public are advised to ingest less than the 15 mg per unit limit and wait at least 90 minutes and up to four hours before eating or drinking more.

Symptoms of marijuana overdose include (JAMA Pediatrics, July 25, 2016):

  • Drowsiness/lethargy
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of muscle control
  • Agitation
  • Vomiting
  • Fast (or slow) heart beat
  • Slowing of breath
  • Muscle stiffness
  • Low blood pressure
  • Seizures

People can have more than one of the above effects. Remember, symptoms are more significant among children due to brain development, size, and weight.

In the most recent study, about one of ten of children who ate or drank marijuana did so because of containers that were not child-resistant. In a third of those cases, the problem was “poor child supervision or product storage” (JAMA Pediatrics, July 25, 2016).

How to Keep Children and Pets Safe

Young children in particular cannot read labels that identify the products as containing marijuana.

— You can help keep the children and pets in your life safe and healthy by storing all marijuana products in a locked area that they cannot see or reach.

— If your child eats or drinks marijuana products, call the Poison Center Hotline as soon as possible at 1-800-222-1222. If your pet ingests a product, contact your emergency pet hospital.

— If symptoms seem bad, call 911 or go to the emergency room right away. Symptoms can include your child having trouble walking or sitting up, starting to be sleepy or having a hard time breathing.

Parents: get more info on how to keep your kids safe at the Children’s Hospital Colorado website

About Retail Marijuana Edibles

This information provided by the Oregon Health Authority:

Temporary Oregon Administrative Rules have gone into effect as of June 2. The rules, under OAR 333-008-1500, are available online at: http://www.oregon.gov/oha/mmj/Documents/Rulemaking/333-008-Marijuana-Early-Start-Temporary-Rule-Text.pdf

They allow a registered medical marijuana dispensary to sell to members of the public age 21 or older one unit of a single-serving, low-dose cannabinoid edible per day. A unit of low-dose cannabinoid edible can contain more than one edible as long as the total tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in the unit does not exceed 15 mg. THC is the chemical in marijuana that makes you high. Also on June 2, all edible retail marijuana products in Oregon must have a clear THC serving size indicated on them.

To learn more about the work of the Oregon Public Health Division related to marijuana, please visit http://healthoregon.org/marijuana

Reference: (1) Wang, G.S., Le Lait, M-C., Deakyne, S.J., Bronstein, A.C., Bajaj, L., & Roosevelt, G. (2016, July 26). Unintentional pediatric exposures to marijuana in Colorado, 2009-2015. JAMA Pediatrics. doi: 10.1001/jamapediatrics.2016.0971

Additional Resources

Packaging and labeling information [Oregon Liquor Control Commission]

Recreational Marijuana Frequently Asked Questions [Oregon Liquor Control Commission]

Oregon Medical Marijuana Dispensary Program [Oregon Health Authority]

Marijuana and Your Health [Oregon Health Authority]

Colorado Retail Marijuana Program

Colorado Dept. of Public Health and Environment’s Good to Know Program

Washington State Liquor Board FAQs on Marijuana

Washington State Dept. of Health Recreational Marijuana FAQs

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Category: Marijuana, Other Drugs

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