Does CBD Show Up on a Drug Test?
Maybe you’ve already made CBD tinctures or other CBD products part of your daily routine, or perhaps you’re thinking about it. A common question that may come up for you is if the CBD gummies you had at lunch or the CBD topical cream you used after the gym will show up on a drug test.
But are these people actually failing because of CBD? Or is there something else going on here? In this article, we’ll answer these questions and more.
Why do employers do drug tests?
Generally speaking, for a few reasons. One reason is that drug abuse can create significant safety and health hazards within the workplace. Drug testing also allows employers to refer employees who have drug problems for the appropriate help. In some industries, drug testing is mandated by State laws or Federal regulations.
Drug testing overall across the country has gone down in recent years. But of the places that still do them, few disclose the necessity of taking a drug test during the interview process. As reported by Forbes, only 0.66 percent of job postings mention regular drug testing.
So if you enjoy the benefits of your CBD products, it’s best to be aware if the potential is there.
How do drug tests work?
There are four kinds of drug tests that a person might encounter in the workplace.
Urine Screens: This is the most common type of drug test. It’s the classic pee-in-a-cup and send it away for analysis scenario that you’ve probably seen on television shows, and movies and most likely had to do yourself if you’ve ever been drug tested. These tests generally screen for cocaine, marijuana, amphetamine, opiates and alcohol and can also look for nicotine. Ninety percent of drug testing will be in this category.
Saliva-Based Swab: Using a mouth swab to collect a sample, it’s quick and meant to detect recent drug use. It can detect alcohol, cocaine, amphetamine and methamphetamine use within the past few days and marijuana use within the past 10 hours.
Hair Follicle Testing: This test is rarely used because it rarely detects recent drug use. However, it can detect drug use up to 90 days ago and as recently as about five days prior. It’s non-invasive, which is good. It can screen for cocaine, marijuana, opiates, methamphetamine and phencyclidine (PCP).
Blood Tests: The most invasive drug testing form, it must be performed by trained phlebotomists and analyzed in a proper lab. However, it is the most accurate of all the tests and can detect cocaine, marijuana, amphetamine, opiates, methamphetamines and nicotine. These tests can specifically target THC in marijuana weeks after use and alcohol use up to 24 hours after consumption.
Do drug tests look for CBD?
The short answer is… NO.
Employers never screen for CBD because cannabidiol is legal under federal law, thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, and it is not a psychoactive substance.
Therefore, a drug test will never screen for CBD specifically. The differences between CBD and THC are vast and you will not fail a drug test because of CBD alone.
Can CBD products cause me to fail a drug test?
Okay, so if employers don’t ever test for CBD, why do you have that friend-of-a-friend who used some sort of CBD product and then failed their drug test at work?
It probably wasn’t the CBD itself that made the individual fail, but most likely another famous cannabinoid contained in some CBD products.
You’ve no doubt heard of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) the psychoactive cannabinoid that is known to give people feelings of euphoria, red eyes, and the “munchies”. It’s the main reason people use marijuana recreationally. And, yes, this cannabinoid is tested for on most drug screens,
You’ll find trace amounts of THC, in addition to other cannabinoids, in full-spectrum CBD products, though only at or under the legal level of 0.3 %. Still, this amount of THC could be enough to trigger readings on a drug test and cause a person to fail.
To avoid this issue and continue using CBD products safely, you can opt for broad-spectrum CBD, which includes other beneficial cannabinoids, but no THC. Or, if you want to go a step further, you can use CBD isolate products. These use pure cannabidiol (CBD) extract and filter out all other cannabinoids and compounds from the hemp plant.
It should be noted that an older style of technology has been falsely detecting CBD as THC in drug tests and delivering incorrect results for thousands of people. The method is called gas-chromatography mass-spectrometry with the derivatization agent trifluoroacetic anhydride (TFAA). If you fail a test that used this method and have used only THC-free CBD products, you should contest the results. Many have, and they won their cases.
Are you still worried about a drug test after using CBD products?
If you’re still unsure about your CBD use because of an upcoming drug test or think that a new employer might test you during the hiring and onboarding process at your new gig, you have some options.
Remember, again, that your employer will never test you for CBD. What you’d likely be trying to get rid of is THC. How long THC stays in your body will be a mixture of individual variables. This includes how much you’ve consumed, how much body fat you have, your metabolic rate and other variables like exercise and eating habits.
To detox THC from the body naturally, it can take up to six weeks, and you’ll want to partake in plenty of exercise, drink lots of water, and eat as healthy as possible.
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