How Drug Tests Work

Testing for drugs is important for parents and employers alike. It can help in determining whether their suspicions are correct and ultimately allow them to get the help the addict will need. However, before going ahead and testing someone, you need to understand the intricate of drug testing. The following sections will go over the technicalities of drug tests.

A Generic View of Urine, Blood and Hair Tests

When testing for drugs, one or all three types of samples are collected, explaining a drug addict’s current situation.

Urine Drug Tests

Urine testing is the most common drug screening method and can even detect recent drug use up to three days. Moreover, this screening is suitable for all testing purposes, ranging from pre-employment testing to random testing, and can also be used for the detection of a wide range of drugs including prescription and illicit drugs.

Blood Tests for Toxin Detection

Toxins in the blood following drug consumption are detectable for a period of only 48 hours. This is the reason shy urine is the preferred medium for testing of toxins.

Hair Tests

The hair folic traps toxins from the blood. However, with the passage of time, these toxins grow away from the scalp towards the middle and the end of the strand until the cutoff. The toxic concentration is greatest near the scalp, which is why a drug examiner examines this section of your hair sample first.

Whether through a home kit or a sophisticated one, a hair sample is collected and then delivered to the laboratory. There, it is dissolved with the help of organic solvents. Once in this liquid, the hair’s toxins are released into the solution, where they are obtained through extraction. After the drug’s molecules have been obtained, a urine tests will be mandatory to determine the extent of the drugs in the test subject’s body.

Which Type of Tests Will You Need?

For a concerned parent, any of the aforementioned tests will do because all you need to know is that your child is addicted. After that, you can take the necessary measures, such as enrolling them in rehab and keeping a close eye on their activities. On the other hand, employers need to consider tests more thoroughly since these will take a chunk of their capital.

If you are an employer who plans to have a test conducted, here are the types of drug tests you should go for. The standard test typically conducted in organizations is the five panel test, which includes the testing of drugs like cocaine, marijuana, amphetamines, opiates like codeine, morphine and heroin and PCP. The ten-screen test may also be used, which apart from the above mentioned drugs includes the testing of five drugs, which are Methadone, benzodiazepines, tranquilizers including Xanax, Librium, Valium, mathaqualone(Qualuudes) and barbiturates(Phenobarbital).

However, before organizations proceed to test their potential or existing employees for drugs, there are a few drug screening test requirements that they need to adhere to.

  • Procedures for drug testing should ensure that the rights of the candidates who are to be tested are not violated by any means.
  • The employer should have in effect a written drug policy that requires job applicants to be drug-free.
  • Many alcohol and drug testing laws require that the job applicants be informed about the drug test and test conditions prior to the testing. Therefore, a written notice of drug testing should be given to employees.
  • Prior to his or her hiring, the applicant should be informed that an employment drug screening is required and necessary. This may be done either by means of the employment application form or a specific form, which may be given to the potential employee for this purpose at the time of the first interview. This notice should explain in detail the type of drug testing which may be carried out apart from listing the OTC medications which may produce a positive drug test result.
  • Certain state laws also require that applicants be given a conditional job offer letter, which indicates that the job offer is conditional to a negative drug test result.
  • To rule out any implications of discrimination, a similar drug testing should be implemented for all applications in the similar job category.

So now that you have an idea about drug tests and the ethical implications employers should ensure, choose the test you believe is best and get the suspected addict to go for it. Who knows? You may save a life.

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