Corporate Drug Testing: What Is It and How Does It Work?
Depending on what job you’re applying for, you may have to be screened for alcohol and drug use. Your employer may require you to do a screening before giving you the job. Or, depending on the laws of your state and the policies of the company, your employer may not be allowed to drug test you until you actually start working at the company.
There is a wide range of corporate drug testing methods that employers use to see if their employees are using drugs or alcohol. These drug tests can include sweat drug screens, breath alcohol tests, blood drug tests, saliva drug screens, hair drug tests, and urine drug tests.
Interested in learning how these drug tests work? And how you can come out in the clear? Continue reading and we’ll walk you through everything you need to know.
Pre-Employment Alcohol and Drug Test
Your future employer might have you undergo a drug test as part of their pre-employment hiring process. Your hiring could also be contingent upon you passing alcohol and drug tests. Some states have laws that limit how and when a drug test can be performed.
Some laws even require employees to undergo drug tests. For example, the U.S. Department of Transportation regulates certain industries that require drug tests.
Employers can also randomly test employees. However, they’re not allowed to test some job applicants while not testing others.
Urine Drug Test
A urine drug test is painless and simple to perform. The test analyzes your urine to see if certain prescription medications and illegal drugs are present. A urine drug test will usually screen for:
- narcotics (opioids)
Although urine tests can also screen for alcohol, breath tests are usually used to screen for alcohol use.
There are two different kinds of urine drug tests. The first type of screening is known as immunoassay. It provides quick results and is fairly cost-efficient.
There are some drawbacks to this type of urine drug test, hower. First, it doesn’t always pick up on all of the possible opioids. Second, it can sometimes give testers a false positive.
This means that the test results will indicate that a person tested positive for drug ease even though they never used any drugs.
If your immunoassay test comes back positive, it will likely be followed up with a gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) test for confirmation. This kind of urine drug test follows the same procedure for obtaining a urine sample as the immunoassay test. However, getting the test results for GC/MS is more expensive and also takes a longer amount of time.
The GC/MS is significantly more accurate though.
The Urine Drug Test Process
When you undergo a urine drug test, you’ll most likely do it in a bathroom that has been specially prepared for the test.
The first step of the process is that a test administrator will give you a sampling cup. You will have to leave your briefcase, purse, and other possessions in a different room. You’ll also have to empty your pockets.
In some rare cases, a same-gendered nurse will go into the bathroom with you to make sure that you are properly following the test procedures. The testing technician will also give you a moist clean so that you can clean your genital area.
You’ll then urinate into the sampling cup. You’ll need to produce at least 40 mL of urine. When you’ve finished, you’ll put the lid on the cup and give it back to the technician.
The technician will then measure the temperature of your urine to make sure it’s in the expected range. The cup will then be sealed and packaged for testing.
How to Beat a Urine Test
There are many sites on the internet claiming home cures that you can do to beat a urine test. Some of these supposed cures include drinking a lot of water, excessive sweating, and drinking other odd concoctions. These home remedies don’t work and in some cases can even strengthen the chances of you failing a urine drug test.
The best way to beat a urine drug test is to use synthetic urine. One of the best products on the market today used for beating urine tests is the Whizzinator XXX. This product comes with Gold’n Shower dehydrated synthetic human urine.
This synthetic urine has the same color, gravity, pH, smell, and foam of actual human urine. It also comes with its own urinating device that mimics the look and feel of a real flaccid penis.
Blood Drug Test
A blood drug test screen for drugs or alcohol in the blood at the time the blood is taken. Blood drug tests are used less often than urine drug tests. This is because blood tests don’t measure drug residues that stay in the body that long after the effects of the drug have worn off.
Typical drugs that are screen for in blood tests include:
A blood drug test is one of the most expensive methods of testing for drugs. It’s also seen as the most intrusive. However, it’s also going to give you the most accurate results.
Due to how expensive and invasive this process is, blood drug tests are rarely used for corporate testing.
How to Pass a Blood Drug Test
The most surefire way to pass a blood drug test is not to take drugs at all. And if you don’t want to abstain from drugs, then you should at least know the factors that can contribute to how detectable certain drugs are in your body.
How hydrated you are, how often you use the drug, and how you ingest the drug can all affect how detectable a drug is in your system. Luckily, with blood tests, there’s a fairly short window when drugs can be detected.
Methamphetamines and MDMA can only be detected in the body for two days after ingestion. Cocaine stays in the body for four days. Most drugs only stay in the body for a few hours up to a few days.
However, repeated use of drugs like marijuana can lead to positive test results for up to two months after the last use.
Breath Alcohol Tests
You may have heard of breath alcohol tests if you’ve ever learned about testing for drunk drivers. These corporate tests use the same kind of Breathalyzers to measure how much alcohol is currently in a person’s bloodstream.
A breath alcohol test works by having a person blow into the device. The results are then given as a number. This number is a person’s BAC, or blood alcohol concentration.
It doesn’t measure someone’s past use of alcohol. It can only say how much alcohol is currently in a person’s system.
When a person is driving, they are considered impaired when their BAC is .08 or higher. Corporate rules tend to be stricter, however. For example, an employee of the United States Department of Transportation cannot have a BAC of 0.04 or higher if they are driving. The US DOT can fire even an employee with a BAC of 0.02.
Mouth Swab Drug Test
Sometimes referred to as an oral fluids test or a saliva test, a mouth swab drug test collects saliva inside a person’s mouth. The saliva is then tested for a person’s use of illicit substances. These tests usually can detect drugs that were only used within the past few days.
Saliva tests usually screen for use of:
Mouth swab drug tests are one of the most popular methods for corporate drug testing because they are much cheaper than many other tests. These tests are also easy to administer. In fact, this is one of the least invasive and simplest ways to perform a drug test.
Most mouth swab drug tests can detect opioids that were used in the last two days. They can also detect:
- methamphetamines that were used in the last four days
- amphetamines used in the last five days
- alcohol used in the last five days
- marijuana used in the last three days
- cocaine used in the last ten days
It’s also important to point out that although an employer can’t force you to take an oral drug test, you might face negative consequences for refusing to take a test. For example, an employer can revoke their job offer, or even suspend or fire you.
Hair Follicle Drug Test
Also known simply as a hair drug test, a hair follicle drug test will test for illegal drug use and abuse of prescription medications. During this screening, a small amount of hair is removed from the head by using a pair of scissors. That hair sample is then analyzed to see if drugs were used in the last ninety days.
This test usually screens for:
A hair follicle drug test can take place in a lab or at work by using a drug testing kit. If done at work, your employer can mail the kit to a lab for results. Washing your hair or dying your hair won’t affect the results of the test.
A test administrator will perform the screening by cutting 100 or so hairs from your head. They may cut hairs from different parts of your head so they don’t give you a bald spot. People with little hair on their heads may have their body hair sampled.
Within 24 hours of removing hair, a negative result can be determined. A negative result means that you didn’t use illegal drugs in the past 90 days.
It takes 72 hours to confirm a positive drug test. Anyone who tests positive will have to undergo GC/MS to confirm and identify the drug used.
A hair drug test costs significantly more than a urine drug test. If your current place of employment requires that you take a hair follicle drug test, then the law requires that your employer pay you for the time you spent undergoing the drug test. Your company also must be the one to pay for the drug test.
If you take the drug test before being hired, the employer isn’t required to pay you for your time.
How to Pass a Hair Follicle Drug Test
You can’t pass a hair drug test simply by washing your hair a lot. One method you could try is shaving your head. Not only is this suspicious but you’ll also have to deal with having no hair. Plus, you’ll have to shave your entire body too and will likely have to take a different drug test or hair test once your hair grows back.
The most trusted method for passing a hair drug test is the Macujo method. This method involves several steps:
- Stop doing drugs immediately
- Dampen your hair with warm water
- Massage vinegar into your scalp
- Massage Neutrogena T/Sal into your hair
- Cover your hair with a shower cap and let it rest for 30 minutes
- What the mixture out of your hair with Aloe Shampoo
- Wash your hair again but this time with Tide liquid laundry detergent
You must not get any of these substances into your eyes.
The Importance of Knowing About Corporate Drug Testing
Nobody enjoys having to go through corporate drug testing. However, if you’re an employee, you must understand what corporate drug testing is and how it works. This way, you can better avoid testing positive as well as protect your rights.
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