Is it possible to fail a drug test when using CBD products?
How can you be sure that the CBD product you use is the same as it is labeled?
There are certain things you need to know before taking a CBD oil drug test. Otherwise, it might end up not as you’ve intended.
As of 2018 U.S. Hemp Farming Act, it has become legal to use hemp-derived CBD products that have less than 0,3% THC nationwide. Since CBD oil has received tremendous appraise for its benefits to our health and relieving qualities, the market has boomed with CBD products: from pet food to gummies, from coffee to cookies, from tinctures to pills, etc.
The result of CBD oil drug test is related to the content of the CBD product. Since FDA (The Food and Drug Administration) is not regulating this substance, there are much misleading labeling and false production happening on a massive scale. To avoid failing CBD oil drug test you must be well informed of the product you use.
So, if you’ve been using CBD oil for quite some time and now are required to take a CBD oil drug test, will CBD show up on a drug test?
Could you fail to get a job because you’re using CBD oil or its other products?
This article is a complete guide to CBD oil drug test - we will examine its possible outcomes, triggers and give you a few tips on how to purchase the right product you need.
Table of Contents
Will CBD Show Up On a Drug Test?
We need to be clear whether does CBD show up on a drug test in the first place. If you were to consume pure CBD oil without any THC in it, then your CBD oil drug test will come out negative. CBD itself is not considered a drug and therefore you shouldn’t worry about failing the test.
It is important to know whether the CBD product has the psychoactive ingredient THC in it or not (the cannabis plant has more than a hundred phytocannabinoids in it, THC and CBD being the most famous ones). Though, while it is okay to use CBD nationwide, THC is still outlawed in some states and you could be prosecuted for using it.
Even though marijuana, which has high levels of THC, might be legal in your state, companies still test job applicants for drug use. Such industries as transportation, safety, defense, aviation are required to test the applicants for certain positions. People applying for a position in schools, universities or hospitals are also oftentimes asked to take a drug test.
On the other hand, a recent investigation made by the New York Times journalists brings doubt in whether all drug testing methods can differentiate CBD from THC.
One particular case was given as an example: in 2018, Mark Pennington was accused by his ex-girlfriend of having a bad influence on their child and therefore limited the time they had together only because the drug test showed THC present in boy’s hair. However, Mr. Pennington admitted only providing his son with CBD-induced honey.
Actually, there are many people who suffered the consequences of failing the CBD drug test even though they only used CBD products. They lost their jobs, their rights as a parent and many other unpleasant consequences happened just because the lab machines failed to differentiate CBD from THC.
In advanced drug test laboratories, CBD does not show up. Though, there is another possibility that might lead you to fail the CBD oil drug test - Full-spectrum CBD oil.
Full-spectrum CBD Oil
Ethan B. Russo, director of research and development at the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute, proposed in his research paper “Taming THC: potential cannabis synergy and phytocannabinoid-terpenoid entourage effect” that there is a synergy between the cannabis plant chemical compounds.
In simple words, the numerous chemical ingredients found in the cannabis plant work best together. That is why Full-spectrum CBD oil is more effective, in terms of benefit to health, than pure CBD Isolate.
Why is this relevant for CBD oil drug test? Because Full-spectrum CBD oil also includes THC and even the smallest amount of it is detectable by a drug test.
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If you wish to pass the CBD drug test, we recommend only using pure CBD extract - CBD Isolate. It is free of all other phytocannabinoids and only contains CBD component. CBD Isolate is usually sold in a form of powder or crystals and is consumed as an edible.
Although CBD Isolate has anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety, and pain-relieving properties, its potency may not be as effective as Full-spectrum CBD oil. Its doses are hard to pinpoint, too - due to its bell-shaped response curve (too low or too high doses reduce its effectiveness).
Since there is a huge variety of producers in the market, not all of them can be trusted. For this reason, we carefully select the companies we review and provide you with an in-depth report about them. Regarding CBD Isolate, we can certainly recommend CBDistillery and Charlotte’s Web.
How Long Are CBD and THC Detectable in the Body?
As we’ve mentioned before, whether does CBD show up on a drug test as THC or not depend on the method used in the lab. Therefore, if you already know that you will have a CBD drug test, it is good to know how long do these compounds stay in your body.
Actually, there are many answers to that because how long does it stay depends on many different factors, such as the potency of the product, method of consumption, frequency, doses, personal body mass, metabolism, etc.
Roughly, here’s a general estimate for CBD oil drug test takers:
- For those who only used CBD oil once, it takes at least 3 days for CBD to be eliminated from your system.
- For those who use it moderately (4-5 times a week), you might need up to a week for it to disappear.
- Daily users - around two weeks.
- Those who use daily for a long time and in high doses - up to a month or longer for CBD to leave the body.
The same goes for the psychoactive compound THC. So if you’re using Full-spectrum CBD oil, be aware that the drug test might turn out to be positive even if you’ve not used CBD oil for a few days.
Is CBD a Drug?
Since the cannabis plant is considered a drug in some states, what about its ingredient CBD? Is it considered to be a drug?
CBD (cannabidiol) is a chemical compound found in the cannabis plant. Because it does not have the psychoactive qualities as THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) has, it is not considered a drug.
Companies hardly ever test employees or applicants for CBD. The most common substances looked for, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), are:
- Cocaine (‘coke’, ‘candy’, ‘powder’, ‘rocks’...)
- Amphetamines (‘crank’, ‘crystal’, ‘speed’, ‘whizz’...)
- Marijuana (weed, hashish, ‘spice’, ‘pot’…)
- Opiates (heroin, opium, morphine…)
- Benzodiazepines (Ativan, Xanax, Valium…)
Marijuana here mainly refers to the drugs that have a high concentration of THC component in them. The drug test doesn't show whether there is CBD in your given sample. Therefore, the answer to “will CBD show up on a drug test?” is no, it will not.
However, some methods of examining the samples might provide misleading results.
How Samples Are Taken For a Drug Test?
If you ever had a drug test made, you probably know that there are two methods of taking a sample:
- Non-invasive. Taking a urine sample, which is the most common way of workplace testing. Much because samples are easy to collect and the person provides it himself/herself.
- Invasive. Like taking blood, saliva, sweat, fingernail or hair from the person in order to test for substances. This method is rarely used for common workplace drug testing because it requires laboratory conditions, more complex tools, and scientific investigations.
Since the urine sample is a more popular and easier way of testing, most of the facilities that make drug tests employ this method.
However, there are certain downsides to it - it’s not as accurate if made on-site. Like we've mentioned before - substances with similar characteristics to a drug might as well be detected, like CBD to THC, and provide false-positive results.
So, for safety sake, if you happen to use a CBD product and planning to take a CBD oil drug test soon, it might be wiser to take a break from using it, just in case.
Where CBD Is Illegal?
According to the 2018 U.S. Hemp Farming Act, hemp-derived CBD products are legal in all 50 states. However, products that have psychoactive compound THC in them are only allowed in the states where the use of Marijuana is legalized.
Take note that even if you live in a state where Marijuana is legal and consume Full-spectrum CBD oil with loads of THC, failing CBD oil drug test might still stop you from getting that desired job.
Another issue, if you live in a state where THC is banned from use, be very careful when purchasing a CBD product - you might not get exactly what you thought you’re getting.
How To Purchase the Right CBD Product?
The market is booming with all kinds of stuff that have CBD in it. The question is, whether it's valid or not.
How to navigate through all this ocean of stuff?
There is an epidemic of misleading labeling happening in this industry, the study shows. That’s why we highly recommend only purchasing the products from trusted producers with transparent labeling, clear production processes, and third-party lab results.
Those who prefer risk-free option, consider having pure CBD Isolate from CBDistillery.
We only recommend the most user-loved and trustworthy producers. You can also take a look at our other brand reviews here.
In this ‘CBD oil drug test’ guide, we have discussed whether does CBD show up on a drug test and what are the possible causes for it to turn positive.
The straightforward answer to the question “will CBD show up on a drug test” is no, it will not.
However, some testing methods are not able to distinguish between a few similar-characteristic substances and therefore produce false results. For example, it might take CBD for THC, which indeed is considered a drug.
Another potential hazard is for those who use Full-spectrum CBD oil because it has THC included in it. When taking CBD oil drug test, it might turn out to be positive just because Full-spectrum CBD oil has a tiny amount of it. Unfortunately, even the slightest amount of THC is detectable by a drug test.
While there are still states that do not recognize THC as a legal substance, and while CBD oil drug tests are not as accurate as we might hope for, there’s still a risk for those who use Full-spectrum oils for their own benefit.
However, there are some brands that offer Broad-spectrum CBD oil which, according to them, is THC-free. Such brands include Medterra, CBDistillery or Green Roads. Or you could always use CBD Isolate which only consists of pure CBD.
We recommend you to be familiar with your own state laws regarding cannabis use and be knowledgeable when it comes to what CBD products to use.
Contributed by Nikola Djordjevic, MD, Co-Founder of LoudCloudHealth
1. Ethan B. Russo: 'Taming THC: potential cannabis synergy and phytocannabinoid-terpenoid entourage effects'
2. Marcel O. Bonn-Miller, PhD; Mallory J. E. Loflin, PhD; Brian F. Thomas, PhD, et al: 'Labeling Accuracy of Cannabidiol Extracts Sold Online'