Urine Testing, Hair Testing, Sweat Testing, etc. What’s the difference?
Each of these types of tests have benefits and flaws. There are five common types of drug tests that many businesses and governmental organizations use to monitor an employee’s drug usage. These tests include:
- Urine Testing
- Hair Testing
- Saliva Testing
- Blood Testing, and
- Sweat Testing
Let’s start at the top with one of the oldest and most common forms of testing on the market.
Urine samples are taken from the employee or potential employee and tested for various drugs. Urine testing has big advantages in convenience. One of the biggest advantages is that getting a sample for testing is very easy to do. It’s also a very cheap test to purchase. These tests are great, but provide a limited window of opportunity for detection of some drugs. For example, if you’re testing for barbiturates, your testing window is only about 2 days. So, you might miss a positive test.
Beaumont Occupational Services can provide your business with this type of testing. Give us a call to learn more.
Hair testing can detect marijuana, cocaine, opiates, amphetamines, phencyclidine, and more. This test can cover approximately 90 days before the results are too unreliable. Many businesses report a much higher positive testing rate with this type of test. This test is performed by removing hair about 1 1/2 inches from the root. This much is taken because hair grows, on average, about 1/2 an inch per month. While this testing is less invasive than urine testing, it doesn’t give an indication of the date that the drugs were taken. This means that you can get a positive result for something that occurred months ago. This is important to note because hair testing is one of the more expensive forms of testing as well.
Saliva testing is another option for testing recent drug usage. This test is widely used after accidents or due to reasonable suspension if an employee is displaying signs of drug use. This test is gaining more traction compared to urine testing because it is far less invasive. This test is also reasonably inexpensive. Beaumont Occupational Services has 24-hour service, so if one of your employees has an accident and you wish to have them tested, we can be dispatched immediately to help.
Blood testing is one of the most expensive forms of testing, but is extremely accurate. This form of testing is the least common due to how invasive it can be, and is more likely to be used whenever the concentration of the illicit substance needs to be known. For example, blood testing can show how intoxicated the employee was up to 24 hours after the incident that caused the test to be ordered. This is a less popular form of testing, but Beaumont Occupational Services does offer it 24 hours a day.
Sweat testing is one of the newer forms of drug testing on the market. It is a patch that is stuck to the employee’s skin for an extended period of time. This test is pretty invasive, but is also decently accurate. This is one of the least commonly used tests. This method is more commonly used to monitor people on probation or involved in child custody legal battles.
If you have any questions about our experience in testing, or if you’d like to order testing yourself, then please give us a call at 409-212-9706.