There are dangers to recreational drugs in spite of their legalization in several states and marijuana edibles consumers stand at risk of overdose if not properly informed. The death of a 19-year old man last year in Colorado has raised red flags and caused the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to further investigate into the matter.
After consuming a cookie etched containing 65 milligrams of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), an exchange student from the Democratic Republic of Congo has jumped out of the balcony of his building to his death. The incident has drawn the attention of both the police department and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
After investigation, the autopsy results have shown that while “overdose” was too strong of a word to apply to the situation, overconsumption of marijuana has been a “chief contributing factor” in the young man’s death.
Described as inexperienced with the recreational drug, the 19-year old obtained it through his 23-year old roommate, given that the age limit for purchasing THC induced products is 21 years old. Though warned not to consume more than one out of the six servings the cookie should have been split in, the cautions were ignored when the effect took too long.
While smoking will occur the sought-after “high” after 5 or 10 minutes, it can take up to 1 or 2 hours until they appear after ingestion, a fact that might’ve led him to overconsumption. The 19-year old was said to have consumed the entire cookie between the first 30 or 60 minutes after the first serving due to impatience and experiencing no effects.
The toxicology report found no traces of alcohol or other drugs in his system, but noted that the concentration of THC was of 7.2 mg/ml, while the legal limit set for drivers is of 5.0 mg/ml. This has led the CDC into a furious want toward clearer and more concise labels to be plastered on THC laced products.
Marijuana has been legalized as a recreational drug in four states: Colorado, Alaska, Oregon and Washington.
Around 45% of Colorado’s sales in the recently legalized marijuana construe of edible products such as cookies, candy or brownies, but many do not fully comprehend the nature of their effect. It seems more awareness needs to be spread on how much longer ingestion takes than inhaling before more unfortunate accidents occur.
The CDC calls for better labels from the producers and more caution from the consumers, as while its effects are not addictive or lethal, overconsumption of THC may lead to psychological disturbances, which could further go down the path to tragedy.
Image source: substance.com