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Teens In America Are Turning To Unregulated Delta-8

A troubling trend among American teens is emerging in the cannabis scene and we shall call this Delta-8 THC.  American teens are using unregulated Delta-8 THC products in a scary way and the situation seems uncontrollable.  

Delta-8 THC or Delta-8 Tetrahydrocannabinol is a naturally occurring cannabinoid found in trace amounts from the hemp and cannabis plant.   Delta-8 is very similar to Delta-9 THC or more well known as just, THC.  Delta-8 is known to have a milder psychoactive effect than THC which for a lot of people is more manageable and the highness is less intense.

For now Delta-8 is legally available in some states in the form of gummies, vapes, edibles and capsules and can be bought in dispensaries and local grocery shops.  As mentioned earlier it has gained in popularity as an alternative to THC for its milder psychoactive effects.  You will not get as high with Delta-8 as you would with THC.  This sounds like Delta-8 is a more sustainable choice for the younger crowd right, but  the situation is quite the opposite.  The popularity of Delta-8 among teens and adolescents is a growing concern for potential health risks and for the safety of public health.  If left unchecked it would pose another health risk for young people just like it did with vaping e-liquids.

The most immediate risk at the moment is the lack of regulations. What is happening now is completely the opposite with THC which is subject to strict regulations and oversight.  THC or what is referred to as marijuana is legal in many states in The US and many countries around the world while Delta-8 is still in the legal gray area.  With unclear rules and regulations it allows for the production and sale of unregulated products. This is definitely the troubling part as Delta-8 products available in the market today come in many different qualities with no uniform set standards.  The potency and safety remains unchecked causing significant risks to consumers and the most vulnerable group of all, teenagers.  

With no set rules and regulations in place Delta-8 can easily be contaminated with harmful substances like pesticides, heavy metals, or other contaminants like microbial which could pose serious health risks to young people. When there is no governing body setting standardized regulations like dosage and labels making it more difficult for consumers especially for people who are not experienced with cannabis to understand how to consume and deal with the effects of cannabis.  Health experts do not understand the long term exposure to unregulated Delta-8 just yet and high consumption could result in health risk and overdose.  

Some might argue that Delta-8 does seem more safe than Delta-9 THC, but in reality we know much more about Delta-9 (THC) than we do of Delta-8.  We know of the therapeutic effects Delta-9 has on our body and mind.  We know that THC comes with psychoactive properties and it does have positive effects on our body and mind to an extent, but too much of a good thing can become negative too.  We don't really know that much about Delta-8 and we definitely don't know how young adolescents would be able to handle the psychoactive effects from Delta-8. 

We don't understand what Delta-8 will do to adolescent brain development.  Adolescence is a critical period of brain development, and exposure to psychoactive substances like Delta-8 during this time could in reality have lasting effects on cognitive function, memory, and the regulation of emotions.

The Delta-8 problem can create a major social problem too.  Increased access to unregulated psychoactive substances may contribute to substance abuse disorders and be a stepping stone to other substances, academic underachievement, and mental health issues among adolescents. 

Here are some recommendations to help guide in making the right choices when it comes to selecting the right cannabis products like CBD and THC.

Checklist for you to check to make sure that your CBD product is of the highest quality:

  • Check for Certificate of Analysis (COA).  It is essential in verifying whether the product is of high quality or not.  Third-party labs prepare COA to ensure that the CBD product is safe from pesticides, harmful chemicals or microbial.  It also evaluates each component that makes up the ingredients of the CBD product.  If the product you are buying does not come with COA then it's not from a reputable brand.  You can find Mellow Organic COA in all of our products on the side of the package.  All you have to do is scan the QR code.

  • Buy from reputable places.  You should buy your CBD product from shops that are well established and have license to operate business.

  • Pick the right spectrum for yourself.  Each type of CBD has its own benefits.  Consider whether you want THC in your CBD product or not.  Full spectrum and broad spectrum will give a better entourage effect, but CBD isolate is easy to use without having to worry about THC.

  • Make sure that there are no artificial and harmful additives added.  Your CBD product should be made from CBD and other cannabinoids with no additional additives added that could cause harm to the body.  Please note most CBD oil contain carriers like MCT oil or coconut oil to help deliver the most effective effects of CBD to your body.  

  • Make sure you choose CBD products that come with glass bottles or packaging.  A good CBD oil product should come in glass bottles preferably dark tinted bottles to prevent heat from sunlight or bright lights to damage the quality of cbd.

  • Make sure that the name and contact information is clearly listed in the product or packaging.

  • Production/expiration date–a high quality CBD product should be good for a year after the bottle has been open.

  • Net weight

  • The content of CBD 

  • Ingredients that includes CBD and other non-cannabinoid additives 

  • Instruction and how to use the products should be readily available. 

  • Suggestions and tips for each serving should also be included.  At Mellow Organic we include suggestions for dosage in our instruction sheet. 

  • Warnings should also be listed in the packaging and easily visible.

Mellow Organic currently has three products:  Mellow 900mg CBD Oil made from CBD Isolate.  Mellow Full Spectrum 1,800 CBD Oil is our high potency CBD option and Mellow CBD Soothing Balm for those that enjoy a CBD-infused vanilla scent balm for relaxation and pain relief.  

Reported by:  Vivek Roachthavilit

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