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The 'Who, What, When, Where And Why Of CBD': Nonprofit Releases Results Of Wide-Ranging Survey

Natan Ponieman

Project CBD, a California-based nonprofit focused on researching the medical applications of CBD, released the results of its first CBD survey.

The organization interviewed 3,506 participants over an eight-month period for the survey

The ongoing survey aims to find out the "who, what, when, where and why of CBD.” 

Updated results will continue to be published as Project CBD gathers more data.

In this first release, participants from 58 countries reported using CBD for over 200 medical conditions. Although the survey is open to international participants, 80% of this edition's participants were from the U.S. 

Tiffany Devitt, who led the survey’s report, told Benzinga that much of the study confirms CBD’s efficacy in ameliorating pain and anxiety. The results are especially useful in offering a clearer understanding of the nuances of CBD's efficacy, she said.

“For example,'' Devitt said, “we knew [CBD] was good for sleep, but we didn't appreciate the fact that it was more useful at helping people stay asleep than get to sleep. We understood that it helped with addiction, but we didn't appreciate the fact that it's more helpful for getting off opiates than tobacco or alcohol."

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Key Findings

Majority Of Users Consume Hemp-Derived CBD

Given that marijuana-derived CBD remains illegal in many jurisdictions, hemp-derived CBD is the main alternative for CBD consumers. Tinctures and topicals were preferred over other delivery methods like smoking and edibles.

Lack of Dosage Parameters

Most consumers were unable to state how much CBD they were consuming, which speaks to the urgency of improving consumer education and product labeling.

CBD Mostly Used For Pain, Sleep, Anxiety

Inflammatory pain, mood elevation, sleep and general wellness were the main reasons cited for CBD consumption by the survey's participants.

Of all participants, almost 90% reported CBD was successful in improving their pain, stating a decrease in pain intensity of 60% —from an average pain score of 6.85 to 2.76. 

When using CBD for sleep, participants reported an average of a two-thirds reduction in the time needed to achieve sleep, an average of 20 minutes versus over an hour.

Participants reported awaking an average of 1.4 times a night versus 4.3 without CBD.

In relation to anxiety and depression, 68% of respondents said their feelings of nervousness were “much better” after taking CBD medicine.

Multiple Conditions

Most participants reported using CBD to treat more than one condition.

Pain, mood swings and sleeping disorders were closely related.

Addiction to other substances, like alcohol, was related to using CBD for the treatment of ADD/ADHD, Project CBD said. 

PTSD was also closely related to substance addiction.

CBD was found extremely helpful in helping participants stay off or decrease the consumption of opiates, according to the survey. 

CBD Also Used For More Serious Conditions

Around 10% of participants reported using CBD for serious debilitating conditions like brain injuries, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, cancer, autism spectrum disorder, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.

Of these participants, those taking CBD for cancer stated improvements in ameliorating nausea and vomiting.

A large number of participants also found CBD helpful in improving appetite, neuropathy and overall weakness.

Patients using CBD for brain injuries reported effectiveness in the relief of headaches, irritability and agitation.

Mild Side Effects

Forty percent of participants reported mild side effects with their CBD consumption, including dry mouth, tiredness, dry or bloodshot eyes and increased appetite being among the most common. 

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