A little over 5 years ago, lawmakers in Michigan passed a few bills on to Governor Gretchen Whitmer who would look them over and sign with no problem. Some of those bills referred to the selling, consumption, and carrying of recreational marijuana within the state of Michigan. Once she signed them into law, the process to bring recreational marijuana use to the Mitten State was well on its way. Now, we have a bustling recreational cannabis scene all over the state.

Many people have started to suggest that prisoners who weren't sent away for possessing marijuana should begin to be released and that's another conversation for another time. There do seem to be fewer people receiving possession charges in the state and also fewer hospital visits due to cannabis ingestion, well in adults anyway. The tough part about allowing recreational cannabis use is that it may get into the wrong hands. That is one of the biggest cons to recreational marijuana use and it's becoming a huge issue here in Michigan.

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Michigan is one of the many states around the country that has legalized the recreational use of cannabis for its residents and visitors who are over the age of 21. For many people, they see no issue with this as I don't either but of course, some things need to be addressed. The first is that everyone should be using recreational marijuana safely and shouldn't be driving under the influence. The other is keeping a close eye on children and making sure they are not ingesting cannabis.

A pediatrician at Bronson Children's Hospital in Kalamazoo says that they have seen a steep rise in both the intensive care unit and the general pediatric floor for children with accidental cannabis ingestion. Doctor Megan Sikkema says accidental ingestion is becoming more common in kids due to the pretty colorings of edibles that resemble candy-like features that draw a child's attention.

The confusion between edibles and candy is such an issue because the unregulated industry of edibles does not have to abide by the same restrictions and safeguards as the licensed industry, according to Weyenberg. Weyenberg is the co-owner of Kalamazoo cannabis dispensary, Lake Effect, and serves as a board member of the Michigan Cannabis Industry Association.

The biggest concerns are respiratory depression, so breathing slows enough to where they can’t oxygenate their body or they stop breathing altogether, irregular walking, or a dazed appearance. Sikkema says if your child might have consumed edibles, the first thing you should do is call poison control.

In the end, they want parents and teachers to be aware of the differences in packaging and also what the symptoms may look like. Board members are working with manufacturers to make sure that THC gummies do not look like candy and deter children from ingesting them.

Below is a list of states where recreational marijuana use is legalized:

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