Survey: The Most Common Hesitations of Using CBD

Survey: The Most Common Hesitations of Using CBD

Data shows many people base CBD purchasing decisions on common misconceptions. Find out more and learn the facts with cbdMD’s 2021 survey results.

Debunking Common CBD Misconceptions

There are several common misconceptions about CBD that continue to spread despite their inaccuracies.

To better understand the CBD misconceptions that exist, we surveyed 800 participants and posed questions around their perceptions of CBD as well as the hesitations they have about incorporating CBD into their wellness regimen.

Our survey was based on the following demographics:

  • Demographics:
    • Male: 41%
    • Female: 59%
  • Age Range:
    • 18-24: 9%
    • 25-34: 25%
    • 35-44: 32%
    • 45-54: 14%
    • 54 or older: 20%

It’s not surprising these misconceptions exist when you consider 62% of participants surveyed said they find it hard to find reliable information about CBD. The truth about CBD is that it can provide several benefits when incorporated into your wellness regimen. But to feel confident in doing so, you need to know CBD facts from fiction.

Here, we discuss some of the biggest misconceptions about CBD our survey uncovered and debunk them.

Common Hesitations of Using CBD

 Common Hesitations of Using CBD



Many people are hesitant to use CBD and we wanted to uncover common reasons why this is the case. In our survey, we asked participants which, if any, of the following have made them think twice about trying CBD:

  • Cost: 21.25%
  • Lack of reliable information: 17.50%
  • Lack of trust in manufacturers: 13.50%
  • Lack of belief in the benefits: 11.88%
  • Concern of adverse side effects: 10.00%
  • Concern it will show up on a drug test: 9.13%
  • Concern it is illegal: 8.75%
  • Concern it will get me high: 3.75%
  • Concern it is only for medical use: 3.62%
  • Concern it can only be smoked or vaped: 0.63%

Let’s explore these hesitations further and evaluate their accuracy.

1. Mind-Altering Effects


cbd mind-altering effects


A common misconception is that CBD will get you high. Of those surveyed, 3.75% said that a concern CBD will get them high is the biggest factor that has made them think twice about trying CBD.

Meanwhile, 34% of survey participants reported that they believe CBD will get them high, and 30% of survey participants said that they believe CBD and marijuana are the same product.

Although many people believe CBD and marijuana are the same product, this is simply not true. While both CBD and marijuana come from the same genus of plant called Cannabis sativa, the truth about CBD is that it differs greatly from THC, especially when it comes to mind-altering effects.

CBD is derived from Cannabis sativa plants that are also called hemp. These plants have tall, sturdy stalks and contain low-THC.

Marijuana, on the other hand, comes from cannabis plants that are shorter, less sturdy, and produce buds with higher THC content.

THC is the compound in marijuana that is psychoactive or intoxicating. It causes a variety of effects that include heightened senses, decreased motor skills, a distorted perception of time, red eyes, dry mouth, paranoia, and fatigue.

While CBD is another compound found in cannabis, it’s not a hallucinogen and does not produce the sensation of being high. It can, however, have other potential benefits that scientists are studying and many people already tout. In fact, CBD has found an enthusiastic following of people who need pain management, relief from everyday stress, and want to support their overall wellness.

2. Adverse Side Effects


Adverse Side Effects of CBD


10% of survey participants said that a concern CBD will have adverse side effects is the biggest factor that made them think twice about using CBD.

The truth is CBD has been studied and has shown few side effects. Even so, it’s always a good idea to speak with your doctor to discuss any concerns. Many doctors have other patients who take CBD and may be able to guide you in your CBD use. It’s especially important to speak with your doctor if you’re on any medications because there’s a chance that CBD may interfere with how your body interacts with some of these medications.

3. Failed Drug Tests


CBD and Failed Drug Tests


Another common misconception is that CBD will show up on a drug test. In fact, our survey showed that most participants (55%) said they believe CBD will show up on a drug test.

This misunderstanding stems largely from CBD being confused with THC. While THC can show up on a drug test, products with CBD derived from federally legal forms of hemp (plants that contain less than 0.3% THC on a dry weight basis) contain such trace amounts of THC in them that they will likely not cause you to fail a drug test. In fact, CBD will not even show up on a drug test, the only component in question is THC presence.

To be sure you don’t have unwanted substances showing up on a drug test, it’s important that you purchase CBD products from trustworthy and reputable brands. Some CBD products may claim to have no THC, however, if a company doesn’t conduct the required testing or is lax with their quality control, you may unknowingly take something that contains THC in it.

It’s helpful to know how to spot fake CBD products so you can avoid being in that situation.

4. Legalities

 Laws surrounding CBD a concern?

Not surprisingly, a common misconception is that CBD is illegal. Of the participants surveyed, 8.75% said that a concern that CBD is illegal is the biggest factor that made them think twice about trying CBD.

In addition, most participants surveyed (59%) said they believe CBD is regulated by the government.

It’s completely understandable why some people may think CBD is illegal or regulated by the government. Before the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp was included on the controlled substances list and fell under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).

Now, however, CBD that comes from hemp plants isn’t considered a controlled substance by the federal government, and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) doesn’t require any registration to grow or research this type of CBD. This type of CBD cannot legally contain more than 0.3% THC by dry weight or else it becomes categorized as THC and falls under different regulations.

Where the federal government steps in is when companies inappropriately market products containing cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds in ways that may put consumer health at risk or violate the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act.

5. Methods of Consumption

 cbd methods of consumption 

An interesting misconception that is quite common is that CBD can only be smoked or vaped. In fact, 15% of participants surveyed said they believe CBD can only be smoked or vaped.

In reality, CBD can be incorporated into your wellness regimen in a variety of ways that don’t involve any smoking or vaping.

CBD tinctures are a highly available form of CBD that allows you to use a dropper to place CBD oil under your tongue, in beverages, or in CBD recipes.

A popular method of enjoying the benefits of CBD is by eating chewable CBD gummies. These are a great option for people on the go who want to be able to quickly pop a couple of gummies in their mouth. Because gummies are processed by your digestive system, it takes longer to feel their effects than with other methods that enter your bloodstream right away.

CBD oil capsules are another ingestible way to take CBD. Simply swallow a capsule with water to discreetly take CBD. There’s no need to measure the oil because when you take a capsule, there’s a predetermined amount of CBD in each one.

For people who may have specific areas of discomfort, CBD topicals offer a soothing way to experience relief. CBD comes in topical creams, ointments, and moisturizing lotions that you can massage onto the area of discomfort.

Like topicals, CBD skincare can target endocannabinoid receptors in your skin to enhance the beauty of your skin while combining with other soothing ingredients to moisturize and invigorate.

And nothing encourages relaxation like CBD-infused bath bombs. Baths have always been a source of healing and by dropping a CBD bath bomb into the warm water, you can take your relaxation time to the next level.

6. Restrictions on Usage


cbd restrictions on usage


A common misconception is that CBD is only for medical use. We asked participants “Do you believe CBD is for medical use only?” and 31% of participants responded with a yes.

The use of CBD is not restricted to medical use. Many people enjoy using it for recreational use and as a part of their wellness regimen. While it’s true that people use CBD to promote better sleep and better recovery among other purposes, there’s a growing number of people who use CBD to simply help them relax, experience enhanced overall health and wellness, or as an active component of their beauty routine.

7. Lack of Information


reliable cbd information


Of the participants surveyed, 17.5% said that a lack of information is the biggest factor that made them think twice about trying CBD.

Meanwhile, 59% of participants surveyed said a lack of reliable information has deterred them from trying CBD, and 53% of participants surveyed said they find it hard to find reliable information about CBD.

These results made us curious to know exactly where people are getting their information about CBD.


Where People Find Information About CBD




We asked participants where they find information about CBD and they listed the following top places:

  • Print publications (magazines, newspaper, etc.): 24%
  • Online publications: 17%
  • Medical journals: 15%
  • Medical professionals (doctor, etc.): 14%

While magazines and newspapers can certainly offer an abundance of information, much of their subject matter is in the form of advertisements. This might explain why so many people feel there is a lack of reliable information about CBD. It’s difficult to trust information when it comes in the form of a sales pitch. Online publications may suffer the same fate.

In contrast, almost 30% of survey participants find their information about CBD in medical journals or from medical professionals. This information may offer greater assurance to someone determining whether to take CBD.

8. Lack of Belief in the Benefits


cbd benefits


A common misconception is that CBD does not offer any benefits. 11.88% of survey participants said that a lack of belief in the benefits is the biggest factor that made them think twice about using CBD.

where to find information about cbd

We asked participants, “Do you believe CBD has proven benefits?” Out of our survey participants, 39% answered that they don’t believe CBD has proven benefits.

Although many people are unaware of or don’t believe in the benefits of CBD, the compound has been found to have several positive effects. CBD can promote relaxation and can help promote a sense of calm. Many people experience stressors in their lives and CBD can offer a reprieve.

The endocannabinoid system plays a significant role in maintaining overall homeostasis and when CBD is taken, it can have a positive effect on the entire body.

CBD can also aid in recovery and, when combined with other proven ingredients like menthol and lidocaine, help provide temporary relief from pain, which can be of great benefit to athletes or anyone who participates in intense physical activity. Yet another benefit of CBD is an improvement in sleep.

9. Cost Feels Prohibitive

 cbd misconceptions

Another common hesitation was the cost of CBD products. 21.25% of our survey participants noted cost as the reason why they have been hesitant to try CBD products. Understanding why CBD is priced the way it is can help you understand its value.

First, hemp farming requires intense manual labor, proper equipment, and continuous inspection during growth. To ensure the hemp doesn’t produce more THC than is legally allowed, any plants that exhibit THC above the allowable amount must be destroyed.

Another reason CBD is expensive is that the extraction and refinement of cannabinoids is a challenging process that requires expensive, highly calibrated machines. To achieve a THC-free* product, continued refinement must be done.

Development along with good manufacturing practices and quality control are additional expenses that contribute to the cost of quality CBD. Companies dedicated to producing the highest quality product engage in these practices to ensure consumers are provided with pure, potent CBD.

Positive Sentiments Around CBD

 cbd benefits

Despite various hesitations, our survey revealed overall positive sentiments around CBD. 12% associated the term “wellness” with CBD, while an additional 12% associated the term “herbal” and another 10% used “beneficial” to describe their feelings about CBD products.

Learn More About CBD From the Experts at cbdMD

When determining whether CBD is right for you, you need reliable and accurate CBD information about the compound and its benefits. While there are many misconceptions, the truth about CBD is that it’s a widely accessible product that can promote overall health and wellness.

At cbdMD, we offer the highest quality superior broad-spectrum CBD products available and deliver the CBD oil facts and information you need to make informed choices about your wellness regimen. All our products come with a THC-free* guarantee, coupled with third-party testing, so you can buy CBD with peace of mind. Choose from gummies, tinctures, topicals, skin care, and more.

Have a question about one of our products? Contact us, and we’ll be happy to answer all your questions and help you find CBD products that are perfect for you.