Public perception of medicinal and recreational cannabis and its effect on mental health: a survey of a regional Australian town.
Australas Psychiatry. 2020 Nov 09;:1039856220970047
Authors: Webb M, Mansfield K
OBJECTIVE: To investigate beliefs about treatment capabilities of medicinal cannabis (MC), the effect of recreational cannabis (RC) on mental health and online cannabis search trends.
METHOD: Participants (n = 117) completed an online survey, and search engine optimisation software was used to analyse internet search trends.
RESULTS: Half the participants perceived RC as harmful to mental health but were uncertain if it impairs treatment for depression or prevents anxiety. Participants believed MC can treat depression and/or anxiety. The Google keyword ‘CBD oil’ is most popular when seeking cannabis information and provides misinformation.
CONCLUSION: Australians are exposed to misinformation about MC online, explaining why participants believed that MC could treat anxiety and/or depression and why there is a reduction in the belief that RC is harmful to mental health. Health authorities should incorporate search engine optimisation strategies to provide accurate information about cannabis.
PMID: 33167664 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]
Source: ncbi 2