A new survey regarding marijuana and cannabidiol (CBD) use by Baby Boomers and older revealed that 83 percent of the 11,000+ respondents are using some form of cannabis, either for medical, recreational purposes or both. Almost 50 percent partake both for recreational and medical reasons, 66 percent partake daily, and 5 percent use rarely. Only 12 percent have never used marijuana. The numbers reveal that marijuana and/or CBD use use is an important component of many seniors’ lives.
“The results frankly shocked me, and I believe they will generate some much-needed dialogue about aging, senior living, and what it means to have the freedom to be our best selves as we age,” said Lisa Cini, a senior living expert and author of multiple books focused on seniors aging on their own terms. “74.1 million Baby Boomers in the U.S. today, don’t just want freedom as they age; they consider it oxygen for their soul. We can’t avoid factoring in that recreational drugs were part of how the Boomer generation grew up, and when it comes to marijuana, quite a few have either never stopped partaking or have resumed doing so when no longer having to maintain a career or raise children.”
In recent years, laws legalizing medical use have been enacted in 31 states, and recreational use in nine states plus D.C. These changes have brought a major new multi-billion-dollar industry into being. So, what does all this mean for those who, like Cini, are dedicated to making lives better for seniors? There’s a great deal more to marijuana than just getting high, especially for seniors battling health and comfort challenges.
The survey, conducted between July and August of 2018, spread like wildfire among over 15,000 Boomers, with more than 67 percent completing the survey, translating into more than 11,000+ legitimate and complete responses.
About 80 percent of survey respondents were baby boomers, 17 percent were borderline boomers aged 50-53, and 3 percent were over 72 years of age. A big shocker for Cini was that 37 percent of the respondents live in a state where marijuana is not legal for any purpose, which she believes adds validity to the survey because it negates the issue of seniors enjoying marijuana only because it’s legal in their state. It also means that these seniors are thwarting the law and making the effort to get their cannabis somehow.
“Marijuana use is a reality that we can’t just ignore,” Cini said. “It’s time to get over our fear of discussing it because it’s part of the daily lives of so many. Do we now need to think about senior-friendly tools for using marijuana? Are there implications for designing seniors’ living spaces? What about marijuana-using seniors who live with family members who don’t use, including grandchildren? Let’s address these questions in honest, open forums.”
Overall, it appears that from Coast to Coast, CBD is big business and Boomers are adding to its bottom-line.