A recent poll has found that an estimated 80% of parents know almost nothing about CBD products. CBD (cannabidiol) is a chemical compound found in the hemp and cannabis plants. CBD usually contains only 0.3% of THC. THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is the psychoactive component of the cannabis plant that induces a high when consumed.
The poll found that of the 7% of parents who had considered giving or had given their child a CBD product, only about 30% had discussed its use with their child’s pediatrician. Close to 2,000 parents in the country participated in the poll, with 35% of them revealing that they thought that cannabis and CBD were the same thing.
Most CBD products, apart from Epidiolex, aren’t regulated by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (“FDA”), which means that they can be easily purchased off the shelf. Epidiolex is a prescription drug developed for the treatment of certain forms of epilepsy.
The poll also found that more than 80% of parents would like the FDA to regulate CBD products, with only 58% adding that its regulation by the federal agency would be a crucial factor in their decision-making process on whether to administer these products to their children. It also found that almost 75% of the parents believed that CBD products for children needed to be prescribed by a doctor.
While there’s anecdotal evidence showing that CBD may be used to reduce inflammatory diseases, pain and anxiety in children, not many studies on the compound’s effect on kids have been conducted. Dr. Jennifer Griffith, who wasn’t part of the study, noted that the potential side effects of administering the products to children included a reduction in appetite, nausea or vomiting, fatigue and diarrhea. Griffith, who is an assistant professor of pediatrics and neurology, added that CBD could interact with other prescription drugs, substantially reducing or increasing the level of medication in the body, resulting in a number of problems.
Sarah Clark, a co-director of the survey, stated that adults with CBD products should keep them out of reach of children and treat them as medication. She cited the example of products such as CBD gummy bears, which children could see as candy and end up consuming them. Clark added that parents needed to speak to their children’s medical provider before giving their child a CBD product. Doing so allow the provider to suggest alternatives, as well as discuss any potential drug interactions and side effects the child may experience. In addition, it would alert the medical provider to any issues the child could be facing.
The glaring gaps in parents’ knowledge about CBD and cannabis in general means that sector players such as Cannabis Strategic Ventures Inc. (OTC: NUGS) may need to provide more consumer education beyond what they offer at their distribution or retail outlets.
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