Health & Fitness

4 Common Questions About Passing a Drug Test

So you’ve had your final interview and you knocked it out of the park. The job is all but yours. There’s just one thing left: passing a drug test.

Pre-employment drug testing is still standard practice at most companies. And even if you haven’t partaken recently, you probably still have a lot of questions.

Here we’ll try to clear the air by running down some of the most common questions pre-employment drug testing.

1. What Are My Rights?

You may object to having to go through a drug test to secure a job. But from a legal standpoint, the employer holds all the cards here.

While there is some variation in state laws, generally employers have pretty broad authority to mandate a drug test. In return, you only have a right to a reasonable amount of privacy while you take the test. And if you refuse, they have the right to rescind any offer of employment they might have made.

2. What Legal Substances Can Fail a Drug Test?

Certain over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen and ephedrine-based products can trigger false positives on drug tests. Fortunately, testing companies realize this and should ask you in advance if you’ve recently used any common meds known to cause false positives.

Similarly, you should provide a list of any prescriptions you’re taking along with a doctor’s note. This will allow the company to correct for these and ensure you don’t get a false positive.

There are other non-illicit substances that can potentially trigger false positives, however. Kratom, for example, is legal and many Americans use it. But under certain circumstances, it has been knowing to give false positives for opiates.

If you’re an occasional kratom user, read this guide to learn about kratom and drug tests.

3. How Long Does It Take a Drug to Leave Your System?

Depending on the drug in question and the frequency of use, and the testing method, it could be a matter of days or weeks for a drug to no longer be detectable.

NORML of California provided a breakdown of common drugs and the approximate time that it will take before a given testing method will no longer return a positive.

Urine tests are the most common form of drug tests and tend to be able to detect drugs over a longer period than blood or saliva tests. For a habitual marijuana user, for instance, it could take up to a hundred days for THC to no longer be detected in your system.

4. Can You Beat a Drug Test?

The short answer: yes and no.

Since the urine test is the most common, most strategies revolve around beating those. Overhydrating to dilute your own urine is one of the classic strategies. However, testers are aware of this and will usually demand a retest if a sample has clear signs of over-hydration.

Using fake urine, or a sample donated by a sympathetic party, can work. The key here is getting the temperature right. Using hand warmers to simulate a proper body temperature can get around this, but it’s a risky proposition.

Basically, you could hypothetically get away with it with enough planning and a lot of luck. But your odds of failure are far higher than your odds of success.

The Surest Way of Passing a Drug Test is Abstaining, at Least for Now

While it is technically possible to beat a drug test using one method or another, it’s not an exact science. There are so many testing methods that it’s impossible to predict all the possible variables. And while you might well refuse, it would throw your prospective employment in jeopardy.

That’s why the most reliable means of passing a drug test is to budget your time accordingly, giving your body ample opportunity to pass any compromising substances.

And as always, for more lifestyle news and tips, be sure to keep up with the latest from Brain Scramble.