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Does Delta-8 THC Show up on a Drug Test?

February 5, 2021BlogNo Comments »

Delta-8 THC Show up

Although it is not what drug tests look for, Delta-8 THC can show up on a drug test. Because of this, if you plan on enjoying Delta-8 THC, you should be aware of a few important things, especially if you may have to take a drug test at some point.


Understanding Delta-8 THC Vs. Delta-9 THC

 Before getting into why Delta-8 THC may cause you to fail a drug test, you have to understand what it is. This is especially important in comparison to Delta-9 THC, commonly called THC, the substance that drug tests typically look for.

From a scientific perspective, Delta-8 and Delta-9 THC have slightly different chemical structures. In practicality, this means that while the two can have some similar effects, Delta-8 THC is only mildly psychoactive. It produces a much less intense high than Delta-9 THC.

In terms of their presence, Delta-9 THC is the main psychoactive compound that appears in cannabis plants. By contrast, Delta-8 THC only naturally occurs in trace amounts in the plants. That means that if you get a Delta-8 THC product, the manufacturer has extracted and isolated the cannabinoid.


Delta-8 THC


Understanding Drug Tests and Delta-9 THC

 As mentioned, drug tests typically want to see whether you have consumed Delta-9 THC. But there is a very important caveat. Few tests will actually check for Delta-9 THC. Instead, they look for its metabolites. Your body creates these THC metabolites as you metabolize Delta-9 THC. The relevant metabolites are THC-COOH, and they aren’t active. The body stores these metabolites for longer than hydroxy-THC, which is only in the body right after exposure to THC.

That means that drug tests only check if you consumed THC recently, not whether you are currently impaired from it.


Why Delta-8 THC Shows up on Drug Tests – The Metabolites

 Those THC-COOH metabolites are why you may fail a drug test if you consume Delta-8 THC. That is because Delta-8 and Delta-9 THC are similar enough to each other that your body produces the same or similar metabolites. This means that if you consume Delta-8 THC, your body may still produce the metabolites that drug tests look for, causing you to fail.


Delta-9 THC Could Also Be a Problem

You should also keep in mind that even if it weren’t for the metabolites, you could fail a drug test after consuming Delta-8 THC. That is because it can legally contain 0.3% or less Delta-9 THC. While that is not always enough to fail a drug test, it can be.


There Are Also Some Delta-8 THC Drug Tests

 It is also worth noting that although they are very rare, there are also a handful of drug tests that specifically look for Delta-8 THC. These focus on the metabolites your body produces after consuming Delta-8 THC and can detect them at low levels. It should go without saying that if you consume Delta-8 THC, you will fail a test that looks for its metabolites.


Delta-8 THC Drug Test kit


How to Pass a Drug Test After Consuming Delta-8 THC

 As with Delta-9 THC, you should not expect the various “cleansers” for sale to actually clear the Delta-8 THC metabolites from your system. They are typically just a chance for companies to make money and do not produce any results.

You will also find various other suggestions that claim to clear both Delta-8 and Delta-9 THC from your system, but each has its own issues. For example, while Vitamin B3 can clear the THC metabolites, you would have to consume enough of it to have other serious side effects.

Unfortunately, the best way to pass a drug test if you use Delta-8 THC is to just not use it before taking the test. Ideally, you would abstain for about 30 days before the test. Of course, this is easier said than done, especially if your tests are unannounced.

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