False Positive Drug Tests
What is a false positive drug test? It is when your drug test comes out positive for a certain substance (such as Benzodiazepines or Amphetamines), even though you are not taking any illegal drugs. The reason for which this happens is because many prescription medications do have as ingredients substances that can also be found in illegal drugs.
A false positive test will generally be followed by even more complex lab testing in order to confirm the result. The experts will test specifically for certain medications (if you take any) and then rule the test a negative. If, on the other hand they find you are abusing certain medication, or that the substance in your system truly comes from a certain drug use, the test will be ruled from false positive to positive.
How accurate are drug tests
Well, different drug tests have different levels of sensitivity. This means that home kits for example are less sensitive than a thorough lab test. Using a home drug test kit results might come out negative on a certain illicit substance, but if a more thorough lab test is used the result can come out positive.
Urine testing and hair follicle testing are regarded as the most popular and powerful types of tests. Also Gas Chromatography is yet another type of extremely sensitive lab test that can even tell for approximately how long you have been taking a certain drug or medication; or the concentration levels of a substance in your system.
Urine drug tests will not actually reveal if a person is under the influence of a certain drug. The test will only indicate if there is any illegal substance available in your system. On the other hand, a blood test is capable of revealing quickly if the person is under the influence of certain drugs. This is why blood tests are mostly performed at the site of an accident, or most often ordered by Courts.
What can Cause a False Positive
Drug tests quite often trigger false positives. Even though you are not taking illegal drugs, your test can come out positive for a certain illegal substance. Exactly this is why it is so important to inform the drug test administrator about any prescription medication you are taking. One of the simplest foods, one teaspoon of poppy seeds can actually give a false positive result on Opioid abuse. By ingesting one teaspoon of poppy seeds (or eating one bagel with poppy seeds for example!) can give a false positive for up to 72 hours.
A false positive result can also be triggered by antidepressants (such as Wellbutirin) or cold medications (such as Nyquil). Generally, medication containing pseudoephedrine will give false positive results on a drug test. Other medications that can give a false positive on a drug screen include: Trazodone, Naproxen, Promethazine, Clomipramine, Venlafaxine, nonprescription nasal inhalers, Ranitidine or Verapamil. Most often, these medications will give a false positive on Amphetamines and Methamphetamines.
How to avoid False positive tests
In order to avoid false positive tests there are a few steps you can take. Just keep in mind the tips below and you shall test clean:
- Always inform the testers if you are taking prescription medication that might interfere with the result. Also inform them if you are taking any OTC medication.
- Ask to be tested again, especially if you are sure your positive result was caused by a medication you took one time, or by a certain food (such as eating a poppy seed bagel which can give a false positive on Opioids!)
- Prepare for the test in time. If you know you will be tested and you know you are “guilty”, then do your research. Check out for exactly how long the respective drug stays in your system, and stop usage in time. Detoxify your system months in advance if needed, especially if you foresee a drug testing for that important job you wish to get!
- Browse online for detoxification products that are suitable for the type of drug you are taking. Always read testimonials and genuine reviews, to ensure the product really works
- Stop taking OTC medication, steroids, hormones, cold/flu medication, pain killers, etc. Detoxify properly because there are numerous “standard” drugs that can give a false positive.
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