Following an influx of calls to its poison center, the IWK Health Centre in Nova Scotia is warning parents about the dangers of edible marijuana. The center said it received three times as many cannabis-related calls in 2018 than in 2015.
The Centre said that other poison centers across Canada have received more calls than usual since the country legalized cannabis in October. Most of the issues have been a result of exposure to concentrated forms of cannabis and other infused edibles. Many of the calls have been in relation to children aged 12 and under.
Currently, edibles are illegal in Canada but it’s expected that they will become legal later this year. Edibles often look like regular candy or snacks, and as such the IWK warns that parents needs to ensure that parents are properly storing their edibles away so that children do not have access to them.
“Right now, there are no regulations for safe storage of cannabis products, such as child-resistant packages or warning labels. That’s why it’s crucial to store all cannabis products in a locked space or container, out of the reach of kids,” said Julie Harrington of the IWK’s Child Safety Link in a statement.
The IWK also recommends avoiding using cannabis in any form in front of children, and making sure that they don’t know where cannabis is stored.
“Children are more sensitive to the effects of the active ingredients in cannabis,” said Laurie Mosher, clinical leader of IWK Regional Poison Centre in a statement.
“Parents may not realize that children have eaten a toxic amount of a cannabis nicotine product until they have symptoms, such as profound drowsiness and other serious symptoms.