CBD, short for cannabidiol, has grown in popularity over the past couple of years, particularly as a supplement. However, because it contains trace amounts of THC, it’s still possible that it is detectable in drug tests or screenings.
This can be particularly worrisome if you are searching for jobs or need to consent to drug screenings for other reasons (e.g., being on parole). It’s a common misconception that CBD and THC are the same; while CBD is a natural supplement, it’s still possible for the THC metabolites to be detected during drug screenings.
How Your Body Processes CBD and Factors That Affect How Long CBD Stays In Your System
There are many different factors to consider that influence how long CBD stays in your system as well as how it affects you. How long it lasts and is detectable is not the same for everyone. It can depend on:
Although blood tests are not nearly as common as urine tests for screening for CBD and cannabinoids, they can be used to detect THC metabolites. The reason they’re not the preferred method of drug screening is because of how quickly THC is eliminated from your bloodstream.
Generally, THC is only detectable in your plasma for about five hours after you take it. However, THC metabolites and, therefore, CBD can be present for up to a week.
CBD has taken off as a natural remedy for a variety of ailments. CBD products like CBD oil can be made from either the hemp plant or the cannabis plant, which are closely related varieties of the same cannabis species, Cannabis sativa. CBD products contain a cannabinoid—a chemical—called cannabidiol, which does not make you high. The substance in marijuana that causes a buzz is a different cannabinoid, called THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol.
CBD products can still be problematic, however, when it comes to drug testing. Though drug tests screen for THC, not CBD, many CBD products contain a trace amount of THC which will be detected in your bloodstream during a drug test.
Factors in CBD Oil Showing on Drug Screen
Topical products that claim to contain CBD—like shampoos, cosmetics or creams—should not cause any reaction during a drug test because they do not enter the bloodstream. In the case of CBD oils, gummies, teas or transdermal patches, the situation is more complicated. In a test of 84 CBD products obtained online, 18 contained THC.
The legality of CBD products can be confusing. CBD products made from certain cannabis plant varieties are legal only in states where marijuana is legal, due to the potential THC content. CBD products made from hemp variety plants are legal throughout the United States as long as they contain less than 0.3% of THC and do not make any medical claims. (A hemp plant is defined as Cannabis sativa that contains less than 0.3% THC.)
If you are concerned that THC in your CBD oil or other CBD product may show up on a drug test, you may be able to reduce the chance of that occurring, though there is no guarantee. Some of the factors that may increase the likelihood of a failed drug test are:
There are a wide variety of tests available that are designed to detect THC. These tests all have one major pitfall in common: they cannot determine the degree of intoxication. This is an important factor when it comes to CBD use, where a positive test may be well within the legal limits of 0.3% for CBD but still trigger a positive test result.
Now, our full-spectrum, Tanasi CBD products are produced within legislated concentrations of THC. What does that mean for you? The trace amounts of THC may be detected in drug tests and screenings. So we recommend discussing CBD use and your employer’s policies before using any items from our online CBD store. Employers that conduct regular drug testing may not allow for the use of legal CBD products, and it’s best to follow company policies regarding drug use to avoid disciplinary action due to a positive drug test.
Now, if you aren’t subject to regular drug tests, you may still be able to enjoy full-spectrum CBD products. But another factor to consider is how long CBD stays in your body.
The compounds will also disappear from saliva, urine, and blood at different rates. Commonly, saliva will be the first to be clear of CBD and related compounds, whereas blood and urine samples will take longer to be free of cannabinoids.
THC is the reason why marijuana is still considered a controlled substance and is illegal for non-medicinal uses in many states. It is this issue of the legality of THC vs. CBD that makes the question of drug testing even more complex.
Most CBD products are not entirely pure but are produced within the bounds of the legislated THC concentration. This allows additional cannabinoids to work with the CBD to maximize effects in your body. So, a full-spectrum product is best for your CBD experience. But, even this tiny amount of THC may be detected in both screening and drug tests. So, if your employer conducts regular drug screenings, or if you are a professional athlete, be sure to discuss CBD use before taking any tests.
On the other hand, the accepted methods of testing can detect other factors such as the time elapsed since the drug was used as well as the extent of use. These factors can play an important role in differentiating between illegal or recreational marijuana use and legal CBD use.