Some employers require a drug test before you can start working for them, or you may need one while you’re working with your current employer. Legally, a school may require you to have a drug test and so does the Department of Transportation (DOT). With an internet search using tag words “drug testing near me,” search results will show EMC Express Care with Dr. Greg Gardener. These are the most commonly asked questions we receive about drug testing:
Types of Drug Tests
A urine test consists of your urine in a specimen cup. The laboratory technician will evaluate the specimen for metabolites – substances that are formed during the metabolism of food and drugs.
This test also analyzes the amount of antigen-antibody complexes formed within your immune system as a reaction to a drug.
The test consists of a standard blood draw, the same way when you get a complete blood cell count (CBC). Generally, employers will use this type of test to evaluate the level of substance abuse of employees.
A hair follicle test requires a strand of your hair, whether from your face, head, or armpit. This drug test will consist of an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).
In this process, the technician immobilizes antibodies. Then, the tech will clean the specimen and add a chromogenic substrate to see if the specimen turns a color, which will indicate your level of substance use.
For a saliva test, your mouth is swabbed to collect saliva. The test looks for metabolites in your system as the byproducts of drug metabolism.
How Far Back Do Drug Tests Evaluate for Drugs?
Tests evaluation depends on the test, the drug, and the amount of the substance used.
For instance, urine tests can only test for a substance for up to 30 days. For some substances, though, the test may only check for drugs in your system between one to two days prior to the test.
A saliva test checks for drugs that you’ve taken in the last one to 48 hours.
A hair follicle test evaluates you for a longer drug history. Generally, this test can evaluate you for drugs in your system for up to 90 days after use.
Do All Drug Tests Check for the Same Drugs?
No. A drug test can either be a four, five, six, seven, 10, or 12-panels test. A four-panel test evaluates for methamphetamine, cocaine, opiates, and tetrahydrocannabinol.
The 10-panel tests are generally for healthcare professionals and law enforcement officers and check for the aforementioned substances as well as drugs like Quaalude, opiates, and barbiturates.
How Accurate are the Tests?
Hair and blood are usually the most accurate while saliva and urine tests are the easiest to tamper with to twist the results.
You may receive a false-positive on your initial test or a false negative, but the lab will usually run your lab results again to ensure the accuracy of your test. Before your drug test, your employer or school will educate you about when you need a drug test. At this point, you can inquire about the number of substances that the panel will check for as well as any precautions you need to take. The process is relatively simple and quick and requires little effort from you.
Schedule your drug test today with Dr. Greg Gardener at EMC Express Care, serving North Richland Hills and the surrounding Texas region. Call us at 817-503-8800.