3 of the Most Common Types of Drug Tests Explained

3 of the Most Common Types of Drug Tests Explained

Here is an overview of three of the most common types of drug tests.

When you hear of drug tests, your mind will probably automatically go to urinalysis. This is understandable, because it is by far the most widely used method of testing. However, there are some others that organizations use as well. Here is an overview of three of the most common types of drug tests.

Urinalysis

Millions and millions of drug tests are performed each year, and at least 90% of those tests are urinalysis. Urinalysis tends to be less expensive than other types of testing and can still detect the metabolites of illicit substances long after the drugs have stopped affecting the applicant. For example, marijuana can be detected up to two weeks later. Despite the overwhelming popularity of urinalysis for drug testing, it is actually pretty easy to “beat”.

Blood Testing

Blood testing is one of the most invasive types of drug tests, it is also the most accurate. Blood doesn’t lie. Different drugs and their various components are instantly absorbed into the blood stream, and easily detectable there. Blood tests can be expensive, so they are somewhat less common than other types of drug tests. One major downfall of blood testing is that a lot of drugs don’t stay in your blood stream for too long, unless someone is a habitual user.

Hair Follicle

Currently, hair follicle drug tests are mostly used for research purposes. This type of test will determine the type of drug(s) used, as well as the frequency of use. For example, if someone used for a time, got clean, and then fell off the wagon, a follicle test would show this. Unfortunately, follicle tests can be affected by the environment a person is in. For example, if someone is in a home where there is a lot of cigarette smoking, their hair would test positive for nicotine regardless of whether they were actually smoking or not.

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