These days, cannabidiol (CBD) seems to be everywhere. This natural, holistic compound has become widely popular over the last few years thanks to its various uses. And, because CBD is derived from cannabis, there are countless people out there who are hesitant to explore its unique qualities in fear of failing a drug test at work. When it comes to determining whether or not CBD will show up on a drug test, the answer is a bit complicated.
What is CBD Basically?
CBD is one of over 100 cannabinoids that is extracted from the hemp plant. It’s extracted from the plant without causing the user to experience the psychoactive effect for which cannabis is known. Hence, being used for its positive effects on the mind and body. Not only that, but it can be taken in a few key ways:
- Inhaling (vaping, dabbing, etc.)
- Sublingual (tinctures, gummies, capsules, etc.)
- Topically (balms, creams, sprays, etc)
Will CBD Show Up on a Drug Test?
To put it simply, CBD does not show up on a drug test. Testers are not looking for the level of cannabidiol that is in your body. After all, CBD itself is perfectly legal (2018 Farm Bill).
What testers are looking for, however, is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Because THC and CBD come from the same plant, CBD can contain trace amounts of THC. However, chances of there being enough THC in your system to cause you to fail a drug test is unlikely.
How is CBD Extracted?
Currently, the most popular method is CO2 extraction. This method involves the use of pressurized carbon dioxide that acts as a solvent, essentially grabbing onto the CBD so that it may be separated from the other compounds within the plant. Many reputable CBD companies use this method because it seems to preserve the therapeutic properties of CBD more than other extraction methods.
Another extraction method involves using ethanol or olive oil that has been heated to a specific temperature. This allows the CBD to bond with the liquid while leaving behind the other compounds.
It is crucial to know that CBD products that are sold legally nationwide have been extracted from industrial hemp plants rather than marijuana plants. Because marijuana is still an illegal substance on a federal level, manufacturers can only utilize hemp plants as they are legal to consume.
Can You Fail a Drug Test When Using CBD?
It is important to state initially that failing a drug test due to cannabidiol is incredibly rare. However, it’s not uncommon for trace amounts of THC to exist in your CBD product.
CBD products from reputable brands are tested for their THC levels. Currently, a CBD product must contain less than 0.3 percent of THC in order to be sold legally. If you’re purchasing a CBD product, you should have access to information regarding its THC level. Now, if this information is not available on the product’s label or the company’s website, contact them and ask them yourself in order to feel assured.
Of course, just because CBD products must contain less than a certain amount of THC does not mean that all brands follow these rules. As many are aware, there are countless CBD brands out there. Therefore, it is safe to assume that some of these brands aren’t playing by the rules. Anyone who has recently used a low-quality CBD product, might have consumed more than the legal limit of THC without even knowing it as a result of the brand’s low manufacturing standards. However, this is still highly unlikely.
What About a Product that Contains Full Spectrum CBD?
If you purchase a product containing full spectrum hemp extract, this means that it contains cannabinoids from every portion of the plant. In other words, you’re getting a product that has CBD plus other cannabinoids known for their various effects. These cannabinoids include cannabinol (CBN) (known for its positive effects on sleep), in addition to cannabicyclol (CBL) and tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV).
Full spectrum CBD products must also comply with the law. So, they should not contain a level of THC that exceeds 0.3 percent. However, full spectrum products are more likely to have a THC level that exceeds that amount despite the manufacturer’s attempts to follow the law. While it’s very unlikely that a full spectrum CBD product would contain enough THC to cause you to fail a drug test, it still can happen.
What Can You Do if There is an Upcoming Drug Test and You Have Taken CBD?
Based on all of the information that we have provided; you should hopefully feel confident that the consumption of a CBD product is very unlikely to result in a failed drug test. However, there are some key things that you can do just to err on the side of caution.
- Make sure that your CBD product contains less than the legal limit of THC. As long as your CBD product does not have more than 0.3 percent THC, you will be in the clear.
- If you have any doubts, just go for a broad spectrum product. It contains all the essential cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and phytonutrients, without any THC.
- Nowadays, most CBD companies provide third party laboratory results alongside their products. Many times, these results include information regarding the level of THC. Not only that, but other compounds that are found in the plant.
- Only purchase CBD-based products from a reputable brand. Why? In order to know that their manufacturing process involves adequate CBD extraction that eliminates the risk of high THC levels being present in their products.