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Parents Beware, Study Shows That Children Absorb Chemicals From Secondhand Cannabis Smoke

The study found low traces of marijuana metabolites in children, but lack of cannabis research unfortunately provides little knowledge of the effects at the time.

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When it comes to cannabis and the safety of children, there are a few things that we know for certain. For starters, plenty of parents use cannabis for medicinal and recreational purposes, most of who hopefully do so responsibly. Additionally, high-CBD extractions of cannabis have been proven extremely effective for children suffering from epilepsy and other seizure-inducing disorders, even if some states would rather look upon such parents as criminals

But that doesn’t mean that exposing children to secondhand cannabis smoke won’t have an impact on them. In a recent study authored by pediatrician Dr. Karen Wilson, children can absorb certain chemicals from secondhand marijuana smoke. The study involves 43 young children in Colorado aged from one month to two years, all of who were hospitalized for bronchiolitis. 

The researchers sent urine samples to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and found that 16% of the overall samples contained low levels of marijuana metabolites. Additionally, the 75% of the children who had caregivers admit that they had been exposed to marijuana tested positive for traces of cannabis.

Although the study shows that these children absorbed small traces of marijuana metabolites, there is extremely little scientific evidence to show the health risks of secondhand cannabis smoke or vapor. Some research has shown that exposure to low concentrations of THC can cause developmental issues in babies who had mothers use cannabis while pregnant. All in all, the researchers hypothesized that secondhand cannabis was not good for kids.

Regardless of the impact that secondhand cannabis exposure may have on children, it’s nearly impossible to hash out while the plant is still federally illegal. If it really does have a negative impact, then research needs to be conducted in order to find a solution. Without access to answers, many doctors are at a loss when it comes to advising their patients on cannabis use. 

Still, it’s better to be safe than sorry, especially when it comes to your children. The study ultimately warns parents to keep their cannabis use at a distance from their kids, at least until further research is conducted.