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Hair Follicle Drug Test at Home: The Need to Know

01 March, 2024

A man sleeping while there is a bottle of alcohol and drugs scattered on the table

The Australian government prohibits illicit drug use. These substances can cause impairments, endangering the person and others. Hence, drug testing has become more common in various settings. In particular, a hair follicle drug test at home is a popular choice for employers and parents. It involves a testing kit where people place the small hair sample they collect. To prepare, they need essential instruments like scissors and gloves. Those interested in buying a kit must research different brands.

Typically, hair drug testing requires health professionals for the collection process. However, hair drug testing kits for the home have become more accessible with technological advancements. These kits usually come with detailed instructions. Thus, users will know how to cut the hair correctly and send the specimens back to the lab for analysis. To learn more about hair drug testing, the following sections will present what it is, how to prepare, and what the considerations are when selecting a kit.

What is a Hair Follicle Drug Test at Home?

A hair follicle drug test at home is a convenient and reliable way to screen for the presence of drugs in the body. The test analyses a small sample of hair to detect illegal drug use over a long period, typically up to 90 days. The test measures drug metabolites absorbed into the hair follicle from the bloodstream, providing a comprehensive overview of drug use histories.

Hair follicle drug testing for the home involves a drug test kit. People can purchase one online or at a pharmacy. The kit typically includes necessary tools such as gloves and a specimen bag or container. However, there may be downsides to using this testing method. For instance, urine tests provide immediate results. Meanwhile, the hair strand drug test requires individuals to send the samples to a lab.

While a hair test at home offers privacy, correctly conducting it is vital for accurate results. Following instructions and carefully collecting specimens are crucial steps. Administering this method of drug testing can provide valuable insights for personal or legal purposes while offering the accessibility of conducting the test in a familiar and comfortable environment.

Advantages of Hair Testing

  • Hair follicle testing can detect use over a lengthier period than urine or saliva testing. Its window of detection is typically up to 90 days.
  • Urine drug tests are easy to tamper with. However, individuals find hair follicle drug testing difficult to alter, making it a reliable method.
  • Blood testing provides accurate results, but it is quite intrusive. Meanwhile, hair sample collection is relatively non-invasive. Also, it does not require the same level of privacy as urine testing.
  • Head and body hair samples are easy to store and transport. Hence, it is convenient for testing in different locations.

A person wearing gloves placing hair samples into a container

Preparing for a Hair Follicle Drug Test at Home

People should understand the process and potential outcomes when administering a hair follicle drug test at home. This type of drug test can detect long-term drug use, as it can identify illicit substance use for an extended period. To prepare for the hair drug test, thoroughly wash and cleanse the hair to remove external contaminants or residues. They can use a clarifying or specially formulated detoxifying shampoo that removes drugs and toxins from the hair.

After cleansing the hair, gather all the necessary materials for the test. These include a clean pair of gloves and a clean container to collect the hair sample. Typically, these come in the testing kit. Also, prepare scissors. Then, follow the instructions for the collection procedure. Any mistakes could potentially result in an invalid test.

Once individuals secure the specimens in the container, they must send them to a reputable lab for analysis. It is necessary to note that at-home hair follicle drug tests may not be as accurate as those administered in a professional lab setting. Therefore, following up with a professional test if the results are concerning is crucial.

Choosing the Right Test Kit

Selecting the best test kit is essential for obtaining accurate and reliable results. One of the factors to consider is the type of drugs. For instance, people primarily concerned about testing for marijuana would want to choose a kit that targets THC metabolites specifically. Meanwhile, some may need a kit that can detect more drug classes, like prescription drugs.

Additionally, individuals should consider the sensitivity level required for the test, as some kits may be more sensitive than others. By carefully considering these factors, it is possible to choose suitable test kits for hair drug testing that meet the specific needs of the testing situation.

A professional looking at hair samples on a dish for testing

Factors to Consider When Selecting a Kit for Hair Follicle Drug Test at Home

When choosing a kit for a hair follicle drug test at home, consider the accuracy of the results. Look for a tested and proven one to provide precise outcomes. People should take the time to research different brands and read reviews from other users. Consequently, they can ensure that the kit they choose is trustworthy.

Another factor is the ease of use of the hair follicle drug testing kit. Search for one with clear and easy-to-follow instructions so individuals can collect the hair sample without any difficulty. Additionally, consider the time it takes to provide results after laboratory analysis. Some kits may offer faster turnaround times than others. Thus, users should consider their timeline when selecting a kit.

Furthermore, consider the cost of the hair drug test kit. While prioritising accuracy and ease of use is essential, finding a kit that fits the budget is also vital. Compare the different kits and check for additional costs, such as shipping or laboratory fees. Taking all of these factors into account allows people to choose a hair follicle drug test kit that meets their needs and provides reliable results.

Facility for Testing the Samples

Most hair follicle drug testing kits require individuals to send the samples to a lab. Therefore, they should also prioritise searching for a facility that offers dependable testing services. People should consider several essential elements when looking for a lab to send their hair follicle samples.

Firstly, it is accreditation. Accredited centres have been evaluated to meet specific quality standards for laboratory testing. Secondly, it is reputation. Individuals can determine this by reading reviews online or asking for recommendations from healthcare professionals. Lastly, it is quick turnaround times. Some labs may offer expedited processing for an additional fee, while others may have longer wait times.

Conclusion

The hair follicle drug test at home is a convenient way to screen for drug usage. People can buy hair drug test screen kits online or in-store. Using this testing method provides several advantages over others. For instance, it is less likely to produce a false-positive result than urine testing because hair testing has a longer detection time. Also, hair sample testing is easy to conduct. To prepare, they should gather all necessary instruments and read the instructions.

Factors to consider when choosing a hair strand drug test kit include the drug type or drug metabolite individuals want to test. Also, other considerations are test sensitivity, accuracy, ease of use, and cost. Overall, the at-home hair follicle drug test offers a relatively non-invasive and reliable method for detecting substance use. With proper preparation and consideration of the various factors, users can confidently conduct this test to ensure a clean and drug-free lifestyle.

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