Things To Know About Drug Testing And CBD


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One question many people ask about CBD products is whether they can get you high and if CBD can appear on the results of a drug test. Strictly speaking, Cannabidiol (CBD) is not supposed to appear that way, but that does not mean that users are always in the clear. There are many CBD products that have minute amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is what gets you high when you take marijuana. If enough of this component is present, which does happen in rare cases, a drug test can show up as positive. Whether this happens or not generally comes down to the quality of the product you use.

Full-Spectrum: This type has all of the compounds which are found naturally in the plant that extraction is done from. So aside from CBD you would also have flavonoids, terpenes, as well as alternative cannabinoids like THC. Full Spectrum CBD is usually extracted from different subspecies of marijuana, and may contain different amounts of THC, while hemp-derived CBD oil of this kind should legally contain only under 0.3 percent of THC. Full-spectrum CBD can be bought as oils, edibles, or tinctures, and not all manufacturers are open about the origin of the extracts.

Broad-Spectrum: This type of CBD extract contains more compounds that are in the plant, such as terpenes for instance. All the THC is removed though. For this reason, broad-spectrum CBD products are much less likely to have THC than the full-spectrum kind. Broad-spectrum CBD is not as widely available, and when you do get it, chances are it’s in the form of an oil.

CBD Isolate: This is pure CBD, and does not have any of the additional compounds found in the plant from which extraction is done. The isolate is generally taken from hemp plants, which means that there wouldn’t be any THC to be found in it. CBD isolates are sometimes found in stores are crystalline powder, or in the form of a solid slab which the consumer can break apart and eat. Other times, you also have it sold as oils or tinctures.

Drug tests are meant to screen for THC, or else for THC-COOH, which is one of the main metabolites of THC. Federal workplace testing has established cut-off values meant to ensure that trace amounts of THC-COOH or THC don’t trigger a positive when testing. This means that it’s not necessary these compounds are not present in your system if you pass a test, only that the compounds are present under the cut-off value. Following are the different detection windows and cut-off values for different testing methods.

Urine Testing: This is commonly done for cannabis, particularly in the workplace. The amount of THC-COOH present in urine should be at or above 50 nanograms per milliliter if the test is to come back as positive. For reference, one nanogram is roughly a billionth of a gram. The detection windows can change broadly based on the frequency of use and dose. Generally, THC metabolites can be detected in urine from 3 to 15 days after they have been ingested. If the testee’s cannabis use is frequent, that can mean longer detection windows of up to 30 days.

Blood Testing: This is less common than a urine test, and just as unlikely to be conducted in the workplace. The reason is that THC found in the bloodstream is quickly eliminated. THC in plasma can only be detected for five hours, although THC metabolites can be found for up to seven days. Blood test results generally prove current impairment or the lack thereof, such as when driving. In states which have legalized cannabis, blood concentration from 1 to 5 ng/mL can be seen as impairment.

Saliva Testing: This is not common these days, and also, there are no set cut-off limits that can be used to detect THC present in saliva. The Journal of Medical Toxicology has a number f 2017 recommendations published in it, which suggest the cut-off value must be kept at 4 ng/mL. The detection window for THC in oral fluids is roughly 72 hours, but the compound can be detected even afterward if use is chronic and high doses.

Hair Testing: This too is uncommon these days, and just like with saliva testing, there are no set cut-off limits. In private industries, the cut-off includes 1 picogram per milligram. A pictogram is roughly a trillionth of a gram. The detection window extends to 90 days.

In order to ensure that a CBD product does not have THC in it, you need to read the product information carefully before buying, including whether it comes from marijuana or hemp. This should be easy information to find, or else you should probably start looking at other manufacturers.


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