In Washington state, cannabis is legal for adults 21 and over. What does that mean?

  • You must be 21 or older to buy, possess, and use retail cannabis.
  • People under 21 cannot visit a cannabis retail store unless they have a medical card approved by a doctor and are at least 19 years of age.
  • Cannabis remains illegal under federal law.
  • It is illegal and a felony to provide cannabis to people under 21.
  • It is also illegal to use marijuana in public or drive under the influence of cannabis.

How can I talk to youth about cannabis?

Talk Early.

It’s never too early to start talking about important health issues.

Be informed.

View the Youth Cannabis Prevention Toolkit.

[Click Here]

Pick a good time to talk.

Have a regular time to talk, such as over family dinner.

Set expectations

Decide on clear expectations about cannabis use and safety.

Spend time with them. Talk early and often about making safe and healthy choices.

Get in the habit of talking with them so they feel comfortable talking to you about sensitive issues.

Everyone is using cannabis, what’s the big deal?

What is the difference between recreational and medical cannabis?

People use recreational cannabis to get high.

Recreational cannabis has the chemical THC, which causes the high.

People use medical cannabis to treat health issues such as pain.

Medical cannabis has the chemical CBD, which does not cause a high.

Can medical cannabis help with ADHD?

What are the different forms of cannabis?

Cannabis comes in many different forms:


Edibles are food and beverages that contain THC and/or CBD.


Cannabis rolled into a cigarette, cigar, or blunt wrap.


Glass pipes are a tool commonly used for smoking cannabis.


Topical products infused with cannabis used on the skin.


Cannabis in a solution of alcohol and concentrates like oils and waxes. People use tinctures by placing a few drops under their tongue or in food.


Vaporizing cannabis using products like JUUL or blu has become more common.

What should I do if there’s cannabis at home?

If you or any adult you know uses cannabis at home, keep it stored safely.

Other people in the home might accidentally eat or drink edible cannabis that is left out in the open. And it can lead to poisoning or serious injury.

Always lock all cannabis products safely away from children, youth under 21, and pets. Keep it stored, locked, and out of sight.

• If someone accidentally consumes cannabis, call the Washington Poison Center at 1(800) 222-1222.

• If a pet consumes cannabis, call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435.

How do I explain a family member’s cannabis use to my youth?