The words “drug test” can strike as much fear in the heart as the sight of a police car in the rear view mirror…even if you haven’t done anything. Drug testing isn’t meant to be a fear tactic. It’s meant to be a preventative method to ensure that companies maintain a safe and productive workplace, whether we’re talking about a pre-employment drug test, routine DOT drug testing, or even post-accident drug testing. Nonetheless, casual and chronic drug users go to great lengths to make sure they pass their drug test. These are the top 5 myths on how to pass a drug test.
Myth #1: Drink lots of water
This is also known as dilution. Many think that chugging water weeks or even days before the test will flush their system of THC, which is found in marijuana, or other test positive triggers. The trouble is that it can dilute your urine below test positive levels, but now most tests also track levels of creatinine. Creatinine is the byproduct that is produced when food is turned into energy. It travels through the blood and is removed by the kidneys and passed out of the body through urine. If the creatinine level in your urine is found below normal, you may be suspected of tampering with your sample and be called in for a more extensive test.
Myth #2: Add adulterants to “clean” your urine
Adulterants are any foreign substance added the urine sample. Common substances used include bleach, Drano, Visine, ammonia, and vinegar. Cleaning urine shouldn’t be on your list of household chores. The idea of adding the products to urine came from the idea of trying to “mask” or hide drug toxins. All of the substances with the exception of vinegar are added directly to the urine sample. Today’s drugs tests can detect these adulterants. Some think drinking vinegar a few days before a test can flush their system as well. It only lowers the pH level in the urine, not the metabolites which are used to test for drug use. Drinking too much vinegar comes with the unwanted side effect of violent diarrhea.
Myth #3: Exercise
THC, the chemical found in marijuana, metabolizes and stores itself in your body’s fat cells. So if you get rid of the fat, you get rid of the tell-tale THC right? Wrong. Unless you know your drug test is two months away, it’s not a plausible method to clean your system. It takes a long time to lose the amount of weight needed to test negative on a drug test.
Myth #4: Use diuretics
Diuretics are liquids like coffee, tea, and cranberry juice that cause you to urinate more often. You’d have to drink a lot of these liquids and urinate often to even come close to completely flushing your system. Diuretics also eliminate key natural ingredients from your system that would be present in your urine sample. Drug tests detect this kind of tampering and could cause you to fail your test.
Myth #5: Detox
The majority of detoxification products cause you to urinate more, having the same effect as drinking plenty of water. As stated above, this can lower your creatinine levels which can be a trigger for a positive test. Some detox methods include high fiber intake which causes more bowel movements. Fiber blocks fat storage in the body. Since THC stores itself in fat cells and fiber blocks fat, many try to start high fiber diets before a drug test. Once again, the amount of fat loss needed to test negative would not be attainable in a couple of days or weeks.
One sure fire way to pass your drug test is to stop doing drugs. If you think the added stress of chugging water, trying out household cleaning products on urine samples, and drinking mass quantities of coffee and cranberry juice is worth it, you need to rearrange your priorities. Drug testing isn’t meant to be a hindrance. It ensures that you will be the best employee possible by maintaining a healthy and productive workplace.