Cannabis and its derivatives are getting less and less stigmatized as more states are warming to its legalization. Yet, employers and other parts of the workforce industry still practice the marijuana drug test.
As an employee or applicant, it’s important to comply with the drug-free workplace policies but the introduction of THC isomers makes the situation even more interesting. While Delta 9 THC is the indicator for getting a marijuana-positive test, compounds like Delta 10 may now also be considered.
This guide clears the confusion associated with the question: Does delta-10 show up on drug tests? Keep reading to be enlightened.
Delta 10 Overview
The psychoactive Delta-10 THC cannabinoid is an isomer of Delta-9 THC. While both compounds have similar molecular formulas, they differ in atomic arrangement. The distinction in atomic arrangement makes Delta 10’s interaction with the human body unique.
It is said that Delta 10’s psychoactive properties are less potent compared to Delta 9 and its sibling compounds: Delta 8, and 11. So, say you’re smoking Delta 10—you may need to take more hits to feel the effects whereas Delta 9 would only need one.
Despite Delta 10’s mellow psychoactive effect, the compound is still appealing. This is especially true for those who find being clear-headed, energized, and creative far more valuable than getting overly intoxicated.
If Delta 10 causes lesser intoxication than other compounds, will it not register as a marijuana metabolite in drug tests? Read further to find out.
Does Delta-10 Show Up on Drug Tests?
The primary condition for getting a marijuana test positive is, that your bodily sample (urine, saliva, hair follicle, or blood, etc.) should have at least 20ng/mL of the 11-nor-9-carboxy-▵ 9 -tetrahydrocannabinol or THC-COOH metabolite.
THC-COOH is the metabolite produced after Delta-9 THC gets metabolized in the liver. It’s the same metabolite that Delta 10 leaves once its euphoric effects wear off.
Modern-day drug screening methods can’t distinguish Delta 9 from Delta 10. So, you could still fail a test even though what you’ve consumed is only Delta 10. The same principle applies to all other THC isomers.
However, it doesn’t necessarily follow that if you have Delta 10 in your system, you automatically fail a drug test. For example, if the number of THC-COOH produced from Delta 10 doesn’t satisfy the minimum requirement of 20ng/mL, it’s unlikely you’ll get tested positive.
Also, the sensitivity of the testing method affects the result as well. The lower the ng/mL set to indicate a marijuana-positive test, the higher your chances of failing that test.
How Is Delta 10 Metabolized?
The metabolism process of Delta 10 depends on the route of consumption. Let’s explore each metabolic route.
The oral consumption of Delta 10 is through edibles, gummies, pills, beverages, and tincture forms. Once a Delta 10 product is consumed, most of it is metabolized in the liver. This is the moment Delta 10 is metabolized into THC-COOH.
More than 65% of Delta 10 will exit the body through the feces and 20% will be excreted in the urine. The remaining 15% will reach the heart and enter into blood circulation. Both metabolites and active Delta 10 will reach the brain simultaneously.
Delta 10 is a highly soluble lipid, so some of it will get absorbed by your fat tissue. For some time, Delta 10 will accumulate in the fat tissue until when it’s time for it to be slowly released again in the bloodstream.
The inhalation route consists of smoking Delta 10-rich flowers, concentrates, e-juice, etc. In this route, Delta 10 doesn’t need to go through the whole process of digestion, it goes straight to the bloodstream through the lungs.
The bioavailability of Delta 10 through the inhalation route is higher compared to oral. The brain may receive up to 35% of the Delta 10 content.
How Long Does Delta-10 Stay In Your System?
The euphoric effects of Delta 10 wear off for a time but its metabolites stay in the body for much longer. Delta 10 metabolites can be detected as far as 90 days and at least 24 hours depending on the type of drug testing method used.
Here’s a breakdown of detection windows for each type of drug screening:
|Drug Testing Method
|Most-likely to be Administered
|Within 24 hours
|Hair Follicle Test
The following factors determine the duration of Delta 10’s metabolites stay in the body:
- Frequency of use
- How long the person has been a Delta 10 consumer
- The last time Delta 10 was consumed
- Sensitivity of the drug test
- Unique biochemistry of the individual
- Body composition
Factors That May Trigger a Positive Marijuana Test
Several elements can, directly and indirectly, trigger a positive marijuana test. It’s best to get educated on them so you can be proactive about lessening your chances of getting drug-positive.
- Frequent and heavy user
The duration of THC metabolites staying in your body is an accumulation of how long, frequent, and heavy you are as a Delta 10 user. The higher these numbers are, the more likely you are to get drug-positive.
- Amount or dosage consumed
The amount and dose of Delta 10 matter because they dictate the concentration of the compound’s bioavailability. Essentially, the higher the dose or amount consumed, the more likely it is that the drug test will detect THC metabolites.
- Higher body fat concentration
Remember, Delta 10 THC is fat-soluble so individuals with higher body fat could retain more metabolites for longer periods.
- Slower metabolism
Those with slower metabolism have a higher chance of getting a positive drug result because fast and efficient metabolism eliminates THC metabolites better and faster.
Not to sound biased, but the female body is wired to have more body fat than males. This also means that females metabolize THC compounds more slowly. The more body fat, the more THC metabolites are retained. However, this will still depend on a case-to-case basis.
While it’s unlikely to pass a drug test through drinking lots of water, severe dehydration will most likely affect a drug result significantly. Keep in mind that dehydration increases your level of THC.
- Maintaining a sedentary lifestyle
A 2013 study notes that fat cells seem to release more THC metabolites during exercise compared to being sedentary. As such, maintaining a sedentary lifestyle before a drug test may not be counterproductive.
Lookout for other non-marijuana factors that might give you a false-positive drug test for marijuana:
What Are the Trusted Ways to Detox From Delta 10 Fast?
The human body has an amazing excretory system that eliminates toxins and other byproducts like THC metabolites. However, sometimes, your body needs a little nudging to speed up the process especially if you only have a short time to cleanse.
- Temporarily abstain from taking Delta 10 or any cannabis-based products.
The first and probably the most important thing for you to do is to temporarily stop taking Delta 10 products. The sooner you abstain, the longer the time for your body to prepare and detox.
Also stop taking other cannabis-based products, even CBD. Products labelled “broad-spectrum” and “full-spectrum” have traces of THC on them.
- Hydrate and eat fiber-rich food.
Humans excrete THC metabolites through urine and feces. Since this is the case, you should try to drink enough water and add fiber-rich food to your diet. A combination of these will hasten the detoxification process.
- Consider ramping out your exercise routine.
If you have an exercise routine in place, consider ramping that up. You can either add more workout time, introduce an aerobic routine, or simply increase the quality of your exercises.
The market sells several detox kits, all promising to hasten the detoxification process of THC metabolites. However, there is limited research on them and they warrant more investigation. The sole consumption of detox kits will most likely not produce any significant effects without the combination of the natural ways mentioned.
What to Do Once You Failed a Drug Test Due to Delta 10?
Once faced with the possibility of a positive marijuana drug test, do not panic. Remember that a “positive drug test” can also mean a false-positive result. If ever you find yourself in this kind of situation, take the following steps.
Step 1: Request a copy of your results
Request for a copy of the said report. If you know someone or you can hire an expert who reads drug test reports, ask for their help. There may be some errors on paper that can discredit the test.
Step 2: Disclose to your HR manager all the substances you’ve consumed
If you’re sure you haven’t taken any drugs except for Delta 10, it’s important to talk to your supervisor, boss, or HR manager about it. Come clean and disclose all of the possible supplements, pills, and cannabinoid products you might have taken before the test.
Step 3: Keep and treat your Delta 10 products as evidence
If your case develops into a legal battle, you need to treat your Delta 10 product as evidence. Thus, try to maintain its quality. Keep it in a dark, dry, and cool place.
Step 4: Consent for a confirmatory GC-MS test
If your boss finds your explanation credible, he or she would likely request a confirmatory GC-MS test. This usually means it’s your last chance to prove that you’re drug-free.
The GC-MS test or gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry is considered the “gold standard” of drug testing because it eliminates the majority of negative samples. It’s such a sophisticated screening method that erroneous results are nearly impossible to happen.
Step 5: Reach out to an attorney
If an adverse event like getting fired happens to you and you think your case has the potential to win, you need to start looking for an attorney expert on the field.
Delta 10 is federally legal under the Agriculture Improvement Act as long as the product maintains 0.3% less Delta 9 content. However, most drug testing methods don’t differentiate Delta 9 from other THC isomers like Delta 10. Therefore, it’s best to not take any amount of Delta 10 and risk leaving its metabolites in your body before a drug screening.