Throughout Latin America, much like the rest of the world, there are mass calls for the legalisation, and proper regulation, of CBD. This isn’t just about whether or not people can accept CBD into their lives but if they are even willing to accept that it’s not dangerous. “Is CBD dangerous?” is one of the most popular Google searches in South America and this is not without precedent.
News stories from Peru, Chile, and Mexico have highlighted the difficulties that doctors face while trying to make CBD available for their patients. Purposely misleading information or just flat out confusing news titles do little to encourage ordinary people into trying CBD for themselves.
For example, “Attention: Do Not Confuse Cannabis Seed Oil or Hemp Oil with Medicinal Cannabis”. What is the average reader meant to glean from such a convoluted title? Confusion and hopefully a decreasing interest in CBD.
Doctors are there to make sure that their patients receive the appropriate care but it can be hard for many to convince patients about the merits of CBD. Many think that CBD is some hallucinogenic substance, which will radically alter their brain chemistry and means of perception.
Nothing could be further from the truth, however. CBD is non-psychoactive, containing as much as 0.2% THC, the psychoactive chemical present in most forms of regular cannabis.
To add to this, there is confusion between hemp oil and CBD oil. Many parents are hearing of the growing evidence suggesting CBD oil may be used to combat various illnesses in children such as epilepsy. Unfortunately, they are then going out and purchasing hemp-seed oil which they believe is equivalent to CBD.
Cannabis Chile has gone to great lengths to tell consumers that Mapuche pharmacies which sells hemp seed oil will not provide the same benefits as CBD. And yet, the problem still persists.
Further compounding this is the INCB, the UN’s narcotics board, working in Mexico to throw off the justified stigma around opioid-based medications. They insist to the general public that these are better, in the long-run than CBD.
Increasing access to education and medicine is a fundamental issue that needs to be addressed. Luckily, many cannabis companies and pro legalization organizations are attempting to do just that. While there are more centres for learning popping up in urban areas, more rural locations will undoubtedly have the least access to information.
Consistently, studies have shown that doctors from rural areas have much more difficulty in accessing information on a wide spectrum of issues. A reliable way to combat this would be bring the truth to these places. In the United States, journalists have tried doing this by launching a “radical rural” information symposium to combat the spread of fake news and misinformation.
Hopefully, though, we shall see as the market and demand for CBD increases the misinformation will decrease in direct proportion. Only time will tell.