Parents and caregivers can have a big influence on whether or not kids use marijuana.

Cannabis is available in many forms. It’s also more potent than before. Parents and caregivers should take extra precaution to help youth fully understand the health and safety risks of marijuana use.

Effects on Young Adults

The brains of young people do not fully develop until they reach their mid-20s. Regular marijuana use during adolescence and early adulthood can lead to changes in the brain and negatively affect memory, learning, and attention. It can also impact school performance and the ability to drive.

To learn more, visit the CDC.

Stay tuned in to your child


  • Take an interest in your kids’ hobbies and activities.
  • Eat dinner together.
  • Do family activities together.
  • Communicate the way your child does (texting, email, and social media).
  • Note your child’s efforts – and successes – to encourage positive behaviors and choices.


  • Make an effort to understand how your child feels.
  • Remain actively involved in your child’s life and get to know their friends.
  • Monitor your child’s behavior to ensure the rules are being followed.


Learn how to talk to your kids.

Recognizing if a young person is using marijuana

While youth often seek out new experiences and may engage in risky behaviors, you can help prevent underage use by starting the conversation early, and making sure they are aware of the risks.

Someone who is high might:

  • Seem dizzy or uncoordinated;
  • Seem silly and giggly for no reason;
  • Have very red, bloodshot eyes and/or use eye drops; or
  • Have a hard time remembering things that just happened.

Someone using regularly might:

  • Have an odor on clothes and in the bedroom;
  • Use incense and other deodorizers in their living space;
  • Increase their use of perfume, cologne, or breath mints;
  • Wear clothing or jewelry or have posters that promote drug use; or
  • Have items used with drugs such as pipes, bongs, scales, rolling papers, blunt wraps, vapor pens or other devices used for consumption.

Poison Control Hotline
800-222-1222

Serious Reaction?
CALL 911

Pet Posion Hotline
855-764-7661

Safety Tips

Safety Tip

If marijuana becomes a problem, seek treatment.

Visit the Massachusetts Substance Abuse Helpline or call 800-327-5050. The Helpline is the only statewide, public resource for finding substance use treatment and recovery services. Helpline services are free and confidential. Caring, trained Specialists will help you understand the treatment system and your options.

Keep cannabis products locked away, and out of reach of children and pets.

Remember: Getting high could impair your decision-making.

Check in with your doctor if you are using marijuana and are pregnant or planning to become pregnant.

Driving with cannabis in your vehicle? Always keep it in a closed container locked in your glove box or trunk.

Start low and go slow with edibles! They can take one to four hours to take effect.

Always get a ride when using cannabis. Never get behind the wheel.

Only adults 21 or older can purchase, consume, or grow adult-use cannabis.

Next tip »

Did you find what you were looking for?