Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a well-known cannabinoid from the marijuana plant. It is the most researched cannabis product and can be used for various conditions. Its therapeutic use is widespread and helps with anything from pain and nausea to anxiety and stress. Most of the time, CBD is consumed in oil form. While massively popular, there is often confusion about its relationship with drug tests, and many people are unsure whether you can test positive for CBD products.
The confusion is because THC, a psychoactive substance and the substance that drug tests focus on, is sometimes present in CBD products. THC is the component that causes the “high,” so it’s tested in the workplace, schools, and other institutions. However, many people have also heard stories about consuming CBD products that somehow result in a positive test result without knowingly consuming THC.
This can be tricky, and if you’re wondering about CBD and THC and how they interact with drug tests, you’re in the right place – Let’s find out more.
The Truth About CBD Oil & THC
Most drug tests you will encounter will only test for THC and not CBD. That is an important distinction to understand from the beginning. The second most important fact is that CBD oil can sometimes contain small amounts of THC depending on the product type, manufacturer, and other factors.
It is the exception to the norm, but it does happen, and it is the primary reason people experience positive test results after only using what they thought was 100% CBD oil. At this stage, it’s essential to understand some critical terminology before we get to the other reasons for a potentially positive test result.
Cannabis, Marijuana, and Hemp
There is a lot of confusion about these terms, and an essential link to CBD oil and drug tests here. Cannabis is an umbrella term for both hemp plants and marijuana plants. Hemp and marijuana are varieties of the cannabis genus, and both can be referred to as cannabis, which is where a lot of the confusion comes in. They are essentially two different types of plants.
CBD is a compound, or cannabinoid, found in the cannabis plant – So is THC. The difference, however, is that the hemp plant has nearly zero traces of THC (the one to watch for in drug tests). Marijuana, however, is the primary source of THC. This is why hemp has been legally sold in various products for a long time.
As such, most CBD products are made from hemp and not marijuana. Since CBD is known only for its health benefits and isn’t psychoactive (It doesn’t produce a high), it makes sense to use the cannabis plant that doesn’t contain THC. Sometimes, however, CBD is sourced from marijuana (Which contains both CBD and THC), which is often deliberate.
The Link Between CBD Oil And THC
Now we’re getting to the crux of the matter. CBD oil comes in various forms, and the form it takes depends on how it was sourced from the cannabis plant.
● Full-spectrum CBD Oil includes all parts of the cannabis plant, including THC. However, to be labeled as an official CBD product, it cannot contain more than 0.3% of THC.
● Broad-spectrum CBD Oil is similar to full-spectrum but only with tiny trace elements of CBD and other cannabinoids besides CBD. It is the second ‘purest’ form of CBD oil available.
● CBD Oil Isolates are the purest form of CBD oil available, containing no other cannabinoids, including THC. 100% CBD only.
One of the reasons for the occasional problem with drug test fails lies firstly in the confusion some people have with these varieties and secondly in the honesty or expertise of the manufacturer.
If you choose a full-spectrum or even a broad-spectrum CBD product, THC will be present. While this is minimal, especially in broad-spectrum types, it can be enough to trigger a positive drug test.
Many CBD producers are deceptive or not doing their job correctly. Full-spectrum and broad-spectrum oil might have more than 0.3% THC, and broad-spectrum oil might have more than the required trace elements of THC. Many manufacturers sell CBD isolates that contain varying amounts of THC. These factors can result in a shocking positive drug test for the user of CBD oil products.
However, this isn’t the only way to fail a drug test using CBD. Let’s look at some others.
Reasons For Failing A Drug Test When Using CBD Oil
There are five reasons you might fail a drug test after using CBD.
1. Your CBD oil product contains THC – As mentioned, you might be confused about the type of CBD product you purchased, or there might be an issue with the product – Either way, if there’s THC involved, you can test positive.
2. A cross-contamination took place – During the manufacturing, processing, and packaging of CBD products, errors can occur, resulting in CBD contamination with THC.
3. Misleading Labeling – Unfortunately, there are incompetent and unscrupulous producers, and CBD products are often mislabeled. In these cases, they either contain THC when they shouldn’t or contain more THC than they should.
4. Other exposure to THC – Sometimes, people test positive for reasons other than the THC content of their CBD products. Exposure to THC through secondhand marijuana smoking, for instance, could potentially result in a positive test result depending on the amount and the time of exposure.
5. Rare Types Of Metabolism – One of the rarer ways that people can test positive through no fault of their own can happen during metabolism. While extremely rare, there have been cases of CBD oil breaking down into THC in the stomach, although more studies are needed to confirm this and establish the reasons.
Key CBD Drug Test Takeaways
As you can see, it is possible to test positive after consuming CBD products, which can be concerning for anybody who undergoes a mandatory drug test. Therefore, you should only ever purchase CBD products from credible, certified, and legitimate CBD oil businesses to avoid this. You can establish their credentials by checking online or connecting with CBD enthusiasts on forums and boards.
It is also a good idea to only choose CBD-isolate products. But even when you do, you should check with the manufacturer and previous customers on the incidences of errors and cross-contamination. Lastly, if you’re getting a drug test, stay away from secondhand smoke to avoid the possibility of THC in your bloodstream!