The number of American children under the age of six who have accidentally consumed cannabis edibles has increased significantly in the last five years, according to a new study, published in the journal Pediatrics.
Between 2017 and 2021, there was a 1375% increase in reported cases of children consuming edibles, the study found. 573 cases of children resulted in the children being admitted to critical care units.
While 36% of the children were treated and released, 2% of reported cases developed more severe effects. More than 97% of these cases occurred at home.
Dr. Marit Tweet, a medical toxicologist and one of the study’s co-authors, said the goal of the study was to raise awareness of an increasingly problematic issue as states continue to loosen restrictions on cannabis.
“If a child opens a pack of (cannabis-infused) gummy bears, they’re not likely to stop at one. Kids enjoy candy,” Tweet said, noting that children could even “consume the whole package.”
Tweet noted that cases of children unintentionally consuming edibles spiked during the pandemic and suggested that this may be because children at home for longer periods are more likely to be exposed.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: METADORNETWORK.COM
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