If you would like us to look at how CBD is viewed by the US military, read this article on CBD Oil and Military Drug Testing.
There is still a long way to go for hemp and its derivatives, mostly the popular CBD or Cannabidiol. However, if the 2018 Firm Bill is anything to go by, we should be expecting positive turns in the world of hemp and CBD.
After decades of a strict ban, the U.S 2018 Firm Bill has now officially legalized commercial production of hemp. It is a huge step forward, no doubt, but there are still bumps on the road. Bodies such as The NCAA and, of course, the Military are not convinced.
What is CBD, and Why is it Relevant?
To know what CBD is, you should know how it is related to marijuana—and, most importantly, how it is not. You should know that both Marijuana and Hemp plants belong to the larger Cannabis family. However, while Marijuana has high concentrations of a compound called THC, Hemp does not. THC contains the psychoactive element or high as it is universally known.
So, both Marijuana and Hemp contain CBD as well as other compounds. But, unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive (does not affect your state of mind).
CBD Oil and Military Drug Testing
The Department of Defence (DOD) requires that all active members of the military, as well as civilians in service, take tests for possible drug abuse. The test for drug abuse and addiction is even stricter now than before, especially for recruits. The DOD is aiming to raise awareness of the issue. If you apply to join the Military now, know that you’ll have to test for more than 26 drugs.
Types of Tests the Military Carries Out
There are different types of drug tests in the Military; most of them are random. This means that sometimes, you may get picked for testing, and other times you may not.
Here are five standard drug tests in the Military:
The medical testing
These tests are carried out in compliance with medical requirements for military personnel. Tests such as the test for entry into the military (MEPS) and urinalysis for the recruits fall under this category. Once you have been scheduled for medical testing in the military, you cannot refuse to take it. You also have no say over the use of your results.
The random testing
As the name suggests, the tests are random. This is generally done by selecting the subjects through the last number of their social security numbers. Usually, a commander is in full capacity to order these tests done on a random group of his unit. However, a commander cannot order the test done to a specific individual. There are various reasons why random tests are carried out, and like all other tests, they are compulsory.
Probable cause testing
This test means that there is a reasonable suspicion calling for it to be carried out. If a commander has probable suspicion that a person is under the influence of drugs, he/she can request authorization from an Installation Commander who, in turn, is authorized to issue a ‘military search warrant.’
For consent testing to take place, the suspected member has to give consent. This happens if the commander has no probable cause to call for authorization of the military search warrant.
Commander directed testing
A commander enforces this test in the event the suspected member refuses to give consent for a search. It also means that the commander does not have enough evidence to support probable cause testing. Results for these tests may not be used for article 15 or court-martial purposes but may be used for involuntary discharge.
Check out our piece on “Will CBD Show Up on a Hair Follicle Test?” to see all about the hair follicle test with CBD.
What is the Military’s Stance on CBD Oil?
The military is very much aware of the fact that CBD products contain dozens of potential health benefits. Some of the benefits like stress and anxiety relief and chronic pain can come in handy for members of the military. In spite of this, the DOD warns against the use of CBD by servicemen as it may carry with it the risk of exposure to other illegal drugs.
A command message issued through the American Forces Network warns that there could be higher than standard THC content in CBD products. The DOD is also concerned about the possibility of there being synthetic cannabinoids in CBD products. Generally, the message is that members of the military should avoid CBD products or risk THC content in drug tests.
Is CBD oil h
elpful to the members of the military?
There is no doubt that the stance of the military towards CBD is negative. But what if the military is resisting something that could provide a lot of value to its members? Apart from the general benefits of CBD that anyone can enjoy, there is one that the military could benefit significantly from. That is the effect of CBD on PTSD.
How can the use of CBD
oil impact PTSD?
Life in the military was never meant to be pleasant. The circumstances these brave warriors are exposed to in the line of duty can be distressing. In fact, according to the National Council on Disability, between 10 to 30% of servicemen develop PTSD within a year of leaving the combat. If you add to that depression, anxiety, and substance abuse, the stats skyrocket to between 16 and 49%.
The fact that CBD is a safe and powerful means to treat various mental issues, including PTSD, should be enough to have the military looking into it. But sadly, the opposite is true. Services that are there for military men and women such as Veteran Affairs (VA), Medicare, and Social Security are providing no assistance for the servicemen when it comes to CBD.
Apart from helping with calmness and providing a balanced state of mind, CBD could potentially reduce thoughts of traumatic experiences. This is something that could be looked into further to assist suffering servicemen.
The future of CBD in the U.S military is not clear, not while the DOD and other military boards maintain resistance to the compound. As of today, the message posted on the Uniformed Services University’s site strictly warns that the use of CBD should be avoided simply because it may contain THC and test positive for drug tests.
As the website suggests, there could be a change in the future, but that is yet to be seen. Several factors could come into play before the military considers its position on CBD. The primary factor here has to be credible evidence backing the safety and validity of CBD. Now, considering scientific studies into CBD are coming out more and more, we can hope that the future of CBD in the military is not as bad as it looks.
Thank you for reading with us today! Be sure to check out related articles like “Will CBD Oil Make Me Fail My Drug Test?” or “How Long does CBD Oil Stay in Your System?” for more info on the world of CBD.