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Parents swap alcohol for cannabis during COVID-19

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More than half of parents said they have increased their cannabis use since the start of the pandemic
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Increasing numbers of adults have ditched alcohol and turned to cannabis since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, according to reports from the US. 

The online survey, run by The Harris Poll on behalf of Curaleaf Holdings, found that 42 percent of adults who have ever used cannabis have started or increased their consumption since the beginning of the pandemic.

This is one of a number of findings from the study which asked around 2,000 US citizens aged 21 and over about their cannabis habits.

Almost half (45 percent) say they have now reduced or replaced alcohol with cannabis, with a further 33 percent saying they prefer consuming the drug to hitting the bottle.

The demographic which recorded the biggest increase was parents, with 52 percent saying they have increased their cannabis use compared to only 33 percent of non-parents.

The survey also found that more than half (57 percent) of parents with children under 18 who have ever consumed cannabis have reduced or replaced their alcohol consumption with cannabis since the start of the pandemic.

They were also the group most likely to use cannabis for primarily medical purposes.

As the pandemic heaped pressure on people’s mental health, the majority (54 percent) of those who participated in the survey said they were using cannabis to reduce stress and anxiety. 

Helping people to relax was the second most common reason for consuming cannabis, with 50 percent of participants using it for this, followed by the 48 percent of people who said it helped them sleep better.

The similarities in this study were found regardless of educational level or marital status, according to its researchers.

“Since the start of the pandemic, we have seen an increase in new consumers at our dispensaries with more people exploring cannabis,” said Joe Bayern, president of Curaleaf.

“The liberalisation of the plant — and the increasing diversity among consumers who enjoy it — will continue as the general public become more interested in incorporating cannabis into their health and wellness routines.”

Stacia Woodcock, dispensary manager for Curaleaf in New York, continued: “Educating consumers around cannabis consumption is so important.

“Curaleaf’s pharmacists and committed dispensary associates make it a priority to educate our patients and consumers and help them find the right products to make cannabis a part of their lives.”

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