In a typical hair drug test (taken from the scalp), with the hair sample being at least 1.5 inches in length using 90-120 strands (60 mg) of hair, a hair drug test can identify drug use within a 90 day period. If body hair is used as the sample, the time frame of detection can cover a timeframe of up to 1 year of drug use because the growth pattern of body hair is slower than hair from the scalp. The longer the hair the further back the drug detection timeframe can go. Call our Columbus hair testing experts to find out more.
Since It takes 7-10 days for hair to grow above the scalp, drug use within or shortly before that time frame cannot be detected by using the hair drug testing method. To obtain a full view of drug use (both recent and historical), and in an effort to be thorough, Fastest Labs of Columbus recommends ordering a urine screen in addition to the hair follicle drug test. A urine drug test combined with a hair drug test is the most effective way to provide the most accurate test results possible. Call our Columbus hair test lab for a full explanation of the benefits of pairing hair test along with a urine test and we will be happy to answer all of your questions!
After finding an obscure section of hair, and using approximately 90-120 strands of hair, (depending on the thickness of hair), we cut at least 1 ½ inches of hair as close to the scalp as possible. The hair is then run through a chemical solution to rid the hair of all external chemicals and contaminants. After the hair is decontaminated, it is then liquefied and tested for drug usage.
Fastest Labs of Columbus can have the results of your hair drug test in as little as 24 hours, however if a positive test result is found (drug use is detected) in the initial screening, the sample is automatically re-evaluated and re-tested for confirmation of the positive result, which can take an additional 3 to 5 days. The confirmation test is designed to eliminate all false-positives (detections which upon a more intense evaluation return as negative result). If a positive result is returned, Fastest Labs confirms the positive results by GC/MS (Gas chromatography–mass spectrometry). GC/MS is the method used to identify the actual drug or substance found within the test sample.
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There is presently no reliable method for cheating a hair drug test; despite what many products, kits and retailers promise. Since the drug molecules reside deep within the hair shaft (which is why it is called a “Hair Follicle Test”), hair test results cannot be altered or falsified with external alterations such as chemicals, bleach, hair coloring dyes or special shampoos. Tampering with the hair specimen during collection is also nearly impossible as the hair sample must be cut directly from the individual.
One way individuals try to cheat a hair drug test is by shaving their hair off or cutting it short. When this happens, we simply collect the hair follicle sample from another part of the individual’s body; such as their leg hair, arm hair, or other areas. If the employer has a solid drug testing policy in place and prefers not to invasively collect body hair, a shaved head or abnormally short hair, can result in a failed drug test completely. This is why it is so important for employers to implement a solid drug testing policy with Fastest Labs before drugs are suspected or before other problems arise.
The difficulty that individuals have in cheating a hair test coupled with the historically accurate drug use results a hair drug test provides is why employers, individuals, and parents choose a hair drug test over some of the other drug testing methods available at our labs.
For good reasons, hair drug testing is quickly becoming the prefered method of drug testing. In research studies that have compared the two testing methods (a urine drug test compared to a hair drug test) it was concluded that the hair drug testing method identified a significantly higher number of drug users over the urine drug testing method; even 4 to 8 times as many drug users as the urine drug test was able to.
When you come in to have your hair drug analysis done at Fastest Labs of Columbus, we promise that you will be helped within 5 minutes of your arrival. Our certified and trained Columbus staff will then work with you in choosing the best piece of hair to be removed, as well as making you feel as comfortable as possible with the entire process. We also promise to provide the most accurate, affordable hair testing in the industry.
Since hair growth is fed by the bloodstream, and drug molecules are deposited in the blood when used, the bloodstream simply creates a fingerprint of drug use right within the hair shaft (or hair follicle). This history of drug use grows out with the strands of hair, and stays in the hair as long as the hair is present; telling a comprehensive story of what types of drugs have been present in the body. By testing the drug molecules inside the hair shaft, we eliminate many external contaminations that can cause false positive test results.
Hair drug testing is similar to fingernail drug testing, in that the hair follicles are composed of hard protein called keratin. Also like hair drug testing, fingernail test is also a historically accurate way of testing for drug usage. Find out more about fingernail drug testing here.