Despite being used interchangeably, drug testing and drug screening are two very different terms. A drug test is often more reliable and provides an accurate analysis of an individual’s substance use. Major corporations typically prefer testing over screening.
On the other hand, drug screening is a more cost-effective approach, as it is relatively cheaper than a drug test. Also, drug screenings receive results faster than drug tests. Sometimes, drug screenings may result in false-positive results for certain drugs.
Whether an employer requires drug testing or screening, they are looking into a prospective employee’s results for signs of drug use. Drug use may indicate certain behaviors that can affect if the company will hire the individual. Illegal drugs are often associated with low productivity, frequent absences, potential harm to colleagues, and constant changing of jobs. Aside from being an essential requirement for employment, companies also often require their employees to undergo regular drug tests to ensure current employees are not taking specified drugs.
Different Types of Drug Tests
There are a variety of drug tests that employers can request. Some of the most popular ones include:
Urine Drug Test
The urine drug test examines a person’s urine to check for the presence of drugs in the system. Some of the most common types of drugs tested include marijuana, cocaine, opioids, and amphetamines.
The hair drug test serves as an indicator for repeated drug use. Unlike other tests, the hair test may determine drug use from as far back as three months. Just like the urine test, the hair test is used to detect marijuana, cocaine, opiates, and more.
Oral Fluid Test
Also known as the mouth swab drug test, saliva is obtained from an individual for testing. The sample is then screened and processed in the lab to detect drug use from as recent as a few minutes up to about 48 hours.
What to do Before a Drug Test
Here are a few things you should do when you need to take a drug test:
- Inform your healthcare provider beforehand of any prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicine, or supplements you may be taking.
- Before undergoing a urine test, expect to be given instructions on how to obtain a “clean-catch” sample. Avoid drinking a lot of water just before the exam – this can result in diluted urine.
- False positives may occur. If this happens to you, wait to undergo further testing to verify your results.
- Should your results come back positive for a legal and prescribed drug, talk to your employer about the use so that you don’t get penalized.
Visit WorkPartners Occupational Health for Your Drug Testing Needs
Located in Grand Junction, Colorado, WorkPartners Occupational Health aims to provide healthcare services for all types of employers and employees. Our services are targeted towards return-to-work programs, preventive health measures, as well as pre-employment services. We provide quality care services such as drug & alcohol testing, pre-employment physicals, chiropractic services, and worker’s compensation.
Are you concerned about your employees’ health? Are you looking for a proper health examination before applying for a new job? We’ve got you covered. Contact us now at (970) 241-5585, or you may also request an appointment online.