In recent years, it is very common for employers to require prospective employees to pass a drug test before a job offer is made. In addition, employers do test their employees at both scheduled screenings and random drug tests.
Employers can choose from four possible testing methods, which include blood, urine, saliva, and hair follicle. Out of these four, the latter three are the most popular tests employers use and people fail. Let’s take a detailed look at each drug test and exactly what is being tested.
- Urine Drug Test
Urine is one of the most widely used testing methods to screen for drugs. The test itself is looking for metabolites, which are chemical changes caused by drug use. Metabolites can remain in the body for days, weeks, or even up to a month or two after the last drug usage.
For instance, the metabolite in marijuana is TCH-COOH. This is the easiest type to detect because it is a fat-soluble compound that is slow to leave the body. The way the body naturally detoxes itself is by flushing this compound out through urine.
During the sample collection process, urine is provided by the test subject. Normally, this involves urinating into a test collection cup and sealing it. It is important to follow all collection instructions, such as not flushing the toilet after urinating and providing the sample.
Where people tend to fail this test is by doing various things that are apparent and obvious. For instance, they might have someone else provide them a test sample they substitute for their own. The problem with this is urine has a set temperature range which is verified upon providing the sample.
Substituting someone else’s urine means the temperature range will be wrong. Additionally, doing so has its own risks, like the person you got the sample from also used drugs.
Another noticeable thing people will do is drink an excessive amount of fluids prior to the screen to dilute the urine and metabolites. Drug screeners can easily recognize when urine has been diluted. So, while you may pass the test, your employer may request a second random screening without notice.
- Saliva Drug Test
Testing a person’s saliva for the presence of drugs is the second most popular drug test. Saliva contains more than just the metabolites, and it makes it easier to screen for specific drugs and alcohol. However, the presence of drugs and alcohol in saliva only remains for a short period of time. As such, employers tend to only test saliva when they want an instant result, like following an accident where an employee was injured.
Even though the presence of drugs remains a short time, many people still fail this test. One cause of failure is using drugs or drinking alcohol prior to the start of work or while at work. In some cases, employers will ask prospective employees to submit to a saliva drug screening during their interviews. Many people do not think they will be screened at the interview and fail the screening on the spot.
- Hair Follicle Drug Test
Hair follicle drug screening is the third most common test employers will use. Unlike the other two tests that have shorter detection periods, hair follicles can detect the presence of drugs and drug use for up to 90 days and, sometimes, longer. Part of the metabolites in drugs exit the body through the hair follicles.
As the hair grows, the metabolites remain trapped within each individual hair. Since hair grows out slowly, this test can provide an accurate picture of drug use over a period of time. Yet, it not very effective at screening for drug use in the prior week.
Most employers no longer use this test very often due to the cost and time it takes to get results. That being said, people fail this test because they do not expect their employer to require them to submit to a hair follicle test, so they do not make the appropriate test preparations.
How to Pass a Drug Test with Help from ClearTest
ClearTest offers several different products and solutions which can help you pass the three common types of drug tests used.
- Passing a Urine Drug Test
If you have advance notice or know that you will be drug tested as part of a job interview, it is best to discontinue any drug use and flush the metabolites from your body. You will want to drink large amounts of water every day leading up to the test. At least 12 hours prior to the testing, return to drinking your normal level of fluid intake. This will prevent the urine from being overly diluted.
While preparing for the test, you should use Clear Choice Instant Clean Add-it-ive. This product helps flush out toxins and metabolites left from drugs. We also recommend getting some test strips so you can test your own urine at home to verify it is clean.
Another option, if you have short notice, is to consider using synthetic urine which mimics regular urine and can help you pass a urine drug test. However, you must be able to prepare the sample correctly, like using our Urinator product. The synthetic urine has to be heated to the proper temperature prior to submitting the sample.
If you are surprised with a random test, your best option is to drink large amounts of water to dilute the urine. While the screeners may notice this and your employer could request a second screening, it will allow you time to flush metabolites and toxins from your system before the retest.
- Passing a Saliva Drug Test
Saliva tests are some of the easiest ones you can pass if you know what to do. The presence of drugs only remains in saliva for a few hours. You can quickly clear any traces of drugs, alcohol, or even nicotine by using our Dr. Green’s Cool Rinse special mouthwash or our Oral Clear special gum.
Both products cleanse the mouth and neutralize the presence of drugs, alcohol, and nicotine. The mouthwash should be used up to 30 minutes prior to testing. The chewing gum only takes about 30 seconds to release the fluids to clean the saliva and also should be used up to 30 minutes prior to testing.
- Passing a Hair Follicle Drug Test
In order to pass a hair follicle test, you need to remove the metabolites and toxins that are trapped in your hair. The easiest way to do this is to use our Clear Choice HFS (hair follicle shampoo). After shampooing, it will remain effective for up to 8 hours.
Once the hair is cut and collected for the sample, it remains toxin- and metabolite-free forever. It is highly recommended to not only use the shampoo on your head, but also on any other areas of your body where you have hair that could potentially be collected for the test.
What Can I Do if I Fail a Drug Test?
The thing to remember with urine and saliva tests is they are not 100% accurate. If you fail the test, deny the use of any drugs or substances. Shift the blame on the test and say that something must have gone wrong with it. It is not uncommon for someone to receive a false-positive due to something that went wrong during the collection or testing of the sample.
Most employers will allow you to submit a second test. Be aware that your employers may request a more detailed type of test since their suspicions have been raised. However, by preparing for all three types of tests with our products, you are sure to pass your second test.
For additional information about our products, how to use them, how to pass a drug test, or other questions, please feel free to contact ClearTest at 1.800.248.5655 today!