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Home Drug Tests Australia: Overview, Types of Test Kits, and How to Conduct

26 February, 2024

A man sleeping after consuming drugs and alcohol

Drug issues are serious concerns that affect individuals and families across the country. Fortunately, home drug tests in Australia are available for conveniently detecting substances present in the system of individuals. They may select from urine test kits or saliva drug test kits, depending on their needs. To conduct a test, they must follow the instructions provided. This typically entails gathering the samples and then placing them into a device for analysis.

Substance use disorder can cause several negative impacts on the individual and those around them. It can even affect public safety since impairment from drugs can lead to accidents. However, going to an accredited laboratory can be time-consuming and expensive. Hence, many opt to use drug-testing kits to screen for the presence of substances. This article will present information on home drug tests, including the types and how to conduct them.

Overview of Home Drug Tests in Australia

Home drug tests in Australia are becoming increasingly popular as a convenient method of checking for the presence of illicit substances in the system. It allows individuals to check for substances in their bodies within the privacy of their own homes. Moreover, parents can use drug test kits on their children for substance abuse testing.

Home drug test kits are also used in various settings, including workplaces and roadsides. They provide results within minutes, which helps make informed decisions after accidents or other urgent situations. In addition, many kits can test for multiple substances simultaneously. These can provide accurate and qualitative results based on immunoassay technology.

A wide selection of testing kits is available for individuals to purchase. People can visit pharmacies, department stores, and medical supply stores when looking to buy one from physical locations. Many online retailers also offer advanced drug testing kits on websites and online platforms. Individuals can purchase from wherever is most convenient and cost-effective for them.

Importance of Testing

  • Screening for drugs is crucial for ensuring safety within company premises and public spaces, like roads, because it can help prevent accidents.
  • Accurate drug tests can reliability identify individuals with substance abuse disorders, aiding in facilitating intervention and treatment.
  • Using body specimens for drug detection can help authorities, parents, or employers make informed decisions regarding actual substance misuse.
  • Drugs of abuse testing can protect individuals, especially children, from the harms of substance abuse. It can prevent them from developing dependency issues and severe health conditions.
  • Testing is crucial for companies, particularly those in high-risk Australian industries, to fulfil their legal obligations to uphold safety standards.

A testing kit on top of a drug test form

Types of Kits Available for Home Drug Tests in Australia

There are several types of kits available for home drug tests in Australia. Urine drug testing kits are commonly used in various settings. This is because they can trace substance misuse in urine samples for several days or even weeks, depending on the substance. Furthermore, the collection procedure is easy for people to follow. This is why urine drug tests are the standard method for many organisations.

Saliva drug testing kits are another convenient method of conducting a home test. These kits typically come with a collection swab and testing device. They are useful for recent substance abuse screening since the detection period for saliva drug tests ranges from 12 to 48 hours. In addition, they can use this without going to the bathroom. Many workplaces also use this for onsite testing because of this convenient reason.

Meanwhile, there are also kits available for hair testing. However, unlike oral fluid and urine testing, the kit does not contain a device to analyse the samples. This is crucial to take note of when selecting a test kit for home use.

Wide Range of Drugs Detected

Advanced drug testing kits can detect several substances, depending on the panels included in the kit. Therefore, individuals must ensure that the substance they wish to detect is included in these panels. Kits can have five to ten panels for a comprehensive range.

The panels for the testing kits are typically for the common drugs of abuse. This includes amphetamines, cocaine, cannabis (THC), opiates (morphine, codeine, and heroin), and benzodiazepines. Some kits may also provide panels for ethanol, barbiturates, and ecstasy (MDMA). Overall, kits can effectively identify multiple substances within the comfort of homes or other locations, as necessary.

A urine sample next to a testing kit

How to Conduct Home Drug Tests in Australia

Conducting a home drug test in Australia is simple. To start, the individual must select the kit they wish to choose. Afterwards, they must follow the instructions provided by the device manufacturer. Hence, they should make sure to select one that has clean and concise instructions. This can help ensure accurate results.

For urine screening, the procedure typically starts with using a collection cup to get the urine samples. The individual should check if there are instructions regarding getting a first-catch or mid-stream sample. If the urine test kit is a dipstick type, then the individual should dip the test strip into the sample and wait for the results. If it is a cassette type, then they should place the specimen into the device and wait for the prescribed period.

For saliva drug testing kits, the collection process starts by placing the swab stick into the mouth. Then, the individual should brush it around the insides of their cheek and underneath the tongue to gather sufficient samples. Afterwards, they can place it into the testing device and wait for a negative or non-negative result.

Is There a Need for Laboratory Testing?

Yes, there is a need for laboratory testing if the test kit produces a non-negative result. Since there are limitations to the capabilities of a kit, confirmation testing is typically done to verify the results. This is standard practice to ensure that people do not suffer from undue consequences.

A confirmatory laboratory test uses specialised methods like Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS) and Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS). Using these for laboratory analysis can provide accurate and quantified results. These can also account for cross-reactivity, producing more accurate results. Overall, laboratory testing remains crucial for identifying potential false positive results from initial screening using kits.

Conclusion

Using a testing kit is a convenient method for conducting a home drug test in Australia. It allows individuals to check for the presence of substances in their systems or those of their loved ones. They are crucial tools for identifying those with substance use disorders and providing them with tools for recovery. The common types of test kits that people can use at home are saliva and urine test kits.

These kits typically have several panels for identifying substance misuse. To use one, the individual must carefully follow the instructions listed. Typically, the kits will provide the tools needed for testing. To conduct a urine screening test, the individual must use the collection cup to gather urine samples. For saliva tests, individuals use swab sticks to gather the samples. Then, they use respective devices for analysis. Interested individuals may check the drug testing products available at Breathalysers Australia.

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