Tacoma mom says baby accidentally ate marijuana candy; offers warning to others
TACOMA, Wash. - A Tacoma mother says her 14-month-old daughter got sick after eating candy with marijuana in it.
The woman, who does not want to be identified, said the toddler found the candy at a relative's home without anyone knowing. When she went to pick up her daughter, the girl started acting strangely.
“She was very lazy. She was not alert,” said the mother.
Her daughter wasn't eating, not walking, and every time someone picked her up, she'd start crying.
The mother took the baby to the hospital several times before doctors figured out that the child most likely consumed a marijuana edible.
“They said it happens frequently because it's legal now," said the mother. "It's scary. It's a problem. I never thought of it until after it happened, how much of a problem it really is in our state because (marijuana) is legal."
According to Washington Poison Control, there has not been a noticeable uptick in poisonings involving marijuana edibles and minors.
Last year, there were 49 cases of kids under the age of 5 accidentally eating treats with marijuana in it.
“The common scenario we are seeing with the younger kids-- parents are leaving the products laying out. They have it in the gym bag or purse. The kids are rummaging through the purse or gym bag and that's how they find it. Parent has taken it out of the packaging and the child doesn’t recognize it,” said Dr. Alexander Garrard, Washington Poison Center.
Nurse Deborah Schultz with Washington Poison Center says she gets a call from a concerned parent about accidental ingestion of marijuana edibles at least once a week.
“It’s pretty scary for the parents because obviously their kids get pretty stoned,” said Schultz. “Some kids get pretty agitated. And their kids get very sleepy.”
Schultz said she had one call recently involving a grandfather and two young kids.
“We got a grandfather who was sort of babysitting the kids and found some edible candies. He gave the 7-year-old three (pieces). There was a 5-year-old. I think he ate a couple also,” said Shultz. “They felt very funny. The 7-year-old was crying a lot and got really upset because she didn’t know what was going on. She was pretty agitated.”
Adults and children are warned to look for the warning labels - the red hand, the words "Not for Kids" and the emergency number listed.
If you have marijuana edibles in your home - make sure they are properly stored out of reach of children.
If you suspect a child accidentally ingested any drug, call the Washington Poison Center.
A spokesman for the Washington Liquor and Cannabis Board says it requires child-proof packaging and a warning on all marijuana edibles. Each individual serving must also have also child-proof packaging.
According to the spokesman, the board has a four-person panel to review all edible marijuana products and checks to make sure they are “not especially appealing to children.”
Washington State Legislature just passed House Bill-1250 that would allow marijuana retailers to give free lock box to their customers to safely store their products.