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More Americans calling poison control after ingesting cannabis

A new report indicates that people of all ages are calling poison control centres more often for cannabis. Researchers involved in the study believe that this can increase as more U.S. states legalize marijuana.

Published in the JAMA Network Open, the report found that more than 28,000 people called poison control between January 2017 and December 2019.

 
 
 

In all, 38.5 per cent of the phone calls made related to cannabis poisoning via products such as edibles and vapes. Adults 21 and older were more likely to make those calls for help.

Cannabis products like vapes, tinctures and edibles seem to prompt strong responses from users, such as nausea, paranoia, dizziness, vomiting and other symptoms.

These products are usually more concentrated and may have additives that provoke adverse responses and aren’t yet fully understood, depending on the country, such as the vitamin E additive in certain vape pens. This was linked to the EVALI, which rose to prominence in 2019.

Still, researchers warn about the strength of today’s cannabis strains and that people involved in the cannabis industry should take the necessary precautions to avoid exposing people to risks.

“Applying regulatory controls to market-driven innovations in potency and additives is key,” investigators noted. “Novice cannabis users are often advised to ‘start low, go slow’; this guidance may be equally applicable to regulating new retail cannabis markets and products.”

With an evolving cannabis landscape and new users joining in, it’s important for responsible parties to provide guidance and regulation for the industry. Users need to be informed of weed’s proper consumption and should know that cannabis products are stronger than ever.

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