Does CBD Show on Drug Screening?

Even though CBD is completely legal in all 50 states, some people are (understandably) confused about if it will show up on a drug test. 


Mar. 11 2020, Updated 3:03 p.m. ET

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Cannabidiol — also known as CBD — is a completely legal substance in all 50 states. No matter if you take it as an oil, tincture, smoke it in a vape, or ingest CBD as a gummy, CBD is perfectly legal. However, because the phytocannabinoid is derived from the cannabis plant — the same plant as marijuana, which is not legal in all 50 states — some people are concerned about its ability to show up on a drug screening.

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First, let’s do a quick recap of CBD. It is essentially the part of the marijuana plant that does not get you high, as it contains no psychoactive properties. While CBD does contain trace levels of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — the part of marijuana that causes a psychoactive high — there is not enough THC in CBD to produce a high. What CBD can do, however, is provide the relaxing and calming benefits that cannabis can offer, without the additional part of feeling high.

That being said, if you have to take a drug test for whatever reason, of course you’d want to know what to expect if you have been regularly taking CBD. Keep reading to find out if CBD shows up on a drug screening.

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Does CBD Show Up on a Drug Screening?

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The short answer is this: CBD should not show up on a drug test. Unfortunately, there is also a long answer. A lot of CBD products can contain trace amounts of THC, which is the active ingredient in marijuana that causes a high. These trace amounts are certainly not enough to get you high, but they may be enough in certain products to show up on a drug screening.

The amount of THC in a CBD product varies depending on the product. Some CBD-based products might contain more THC than others, so it really depends on which kind of CBD product you’ve been using.

Ultimately, it is unlikely, but ingesting CBD could lead to a positive result on a drug screening.

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Does CBD Show Up on a 10-Panel Drug Screen?

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A 10-panel drug screen is a standard drug test that searches a urine sample for amphetamines, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, cocaine, marijuana, methadone, opiates, PCP, propoxyphene, and Quaaludes. Because the drug test screens for these 10 drugs, it’s known as a 10-panel drug test.

CBD is not one of the substances that a 10-panel drug test screens for. However, since different CBD products can contain varying levels of THC, a person who regularly takes CBD might test positive for marijuana on a 10-panel drug screening.

Now, it’s a little bit more complex than a drug test simply screening for THC. Rather than screening for THC, both 10-panel drug tests and 5-panel drug tests screen for THC-COOH. THC-COOH is what THC turns into after the body metabolizes it.

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The amount of THC in a CBD product varies by product, but most products contain less than 0.3 percent THC. If a CBD product contains less than 0.3 percent THC, it is unlikely that a drug screening would test positive for THC. (Of course, the amount you use is also crucial to understanding if it will show up on a test; if you ingest CBD in significantly high qualities, it’s more likely to show up. But unless you’re running through your CBD bottle on the daily, chances are, you’re fine.) 

In the event that you have to submit to a hair test, you’re also likely to be in the clear. CBD’s THC content is often too low to show up in a hair sample. The trace amounts of THC in CBD products are also too small to be detected via saliva tests.

How Do I Know If My CBD Product Is High in THC?

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The amount of THC in each CBD product varies by product. Factors like body composition and usage also should be taken into consideration, as they matter, too. But what matters most is how highly concentrated in THC your CBD product is.

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Some CBD oil products are derived from marijuana. These oils — called full-spectrum CBD — contain CBD as well as other cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes. Because they contain other ingredients apart from just CBD, full-spectrum CBD can cause you to test positive for THC-COOH because they are high in THC concentration. Check your bottle’s description and ingredients or contact the company to find out more.

How Long Is CBD Detectable in Urine?

How long CBD stays detectable in your urine depends on factors like usage and body composition. If you are using CBD heavily and frequently, Spring Hill Recovery estimates CBD can stay in your system for up to a week, meaning that it would be detectable via a urine sample for more than a month. If you are using CBD more infrequently, it can be detectable in your urine for up to three days after the last dosage.

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Can You Fail a Drug Test Due to CBD Flower?

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What about if you smoke CBD-rich hemp flower? Do your chances of it showing up on a drug test change because it was inhaled rather than ingested? 

Again, there is a short answer and a long answer. Most likely, smoking hemp flower will not result in a positive drug test. According to Evaluating the Impact of Hemp Food Consumption on Workplace Drug Tests, 15 people who were given oils with levels of THC spanning from 0.09 to 0.6 milligrams over 10 days within the 0.45mg dose, screened negative at the 50ng/ml detection threshold. The subjects who ingested 0.6mg of THC screened positive.

Basically, the higher the quantity of hemp flower you smoke, the more likely it is to show up on a drug test. If you smoke less than a 0.45mg dose, it should result in a negative drug test.

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