Call Today 615-332-8838
Call Today615-332-8838

How Does a Hair Follicle Drug Test Work?

hair drug test

Trust but verify. Ronald Reagan’s famous words hold true for employers today. When it comes to hiring new help, you want to be sure you get what you’re expecting.

Hair drug tests are one way to ensure candidates are being honest. For some professions, this step is necessary. What should you expect when doing hair drug tests on employees, and how do you interpret the results of a test?

Read on to find out.

What to Expect With a Hair Drug Test

If you’re considering a hair drug test, then you already know the benefits of this type of test. Hair tests can detect drug use dating back years. The individual can’t alter what’s stored in their hair.

What should you expect with testing? First, a sample of hair gets collected and sent to our lab. Within 3-5 days, we’ll send back the results.

Here’s what we test for at ReliaLab:

  • Marijuana
  • PCP
  • Amphetamines
  • Cocaine
  • Codeine
  • Morphine
  • Ecstasy
  • 6-Acetylmorphine
  • Oxycodone
  • Hydrocodone
  • Oxymorphone
  • Hydromorphone

Did an applicant arrive with their head shaved in anticipation of the test? Recognize that the hair sample can come from anywhere on the body.

As always, check with your HR department to ensure you’re complying with all the laws. Laws on drug testing employees varies by state.

How We Test Hair Samples

ReliaLab‘s process of testing hair is superior to our competitors. Here’s how it works:

  • We use an extensive washing procedure to remove contaminants
  • We use proprietary digestion to preserve the drugs removed from the hair
  • We test each sample with care
  • We analyze each result using an approach approved by SAMHSA guidelines
  • We compile a report and return it to you

We strive to produce quality and timely results for each hair follicle drug test we do.

Another benefit of our lab is that we need a smaller hair sample than competing labs. We only need a sample about as thick as a shoelace tip.

How to Interpret Our Results

You got the sample, sent it off to the lab, and received the results. So, how do you interpret them? Depending on the lab’s analysis, you should get one of three responses:

  • Negative
  • Positive
  • Inconclusive

A negative result means the lab didn’t find drugs in the sample. That’s a green light for employers.

Positive and inconclusive results need more attention, though. Don’t immediately assume these results prove illegal drug use.

If a result is positive, then be sure to go through to identify what drugs got flagged. Some individuals may have valid prescriptions to explain a positive result.

An inconclusive result warrants a re-test with a new sample. It means that the sample was either contaminated, unusable, or damaged during delivery.

Ready to Get Started?

Conducting drug tests is an important step to protect yourself as an employer. It’s just as important to put your trust in a company that will provide accurate results.

Are you interested in getting a hair drug test from a reliable and secure company? If so, then reach out to the experts on our online contact form or by phone at (615) 332-8838.

Order a Test

Whether you are an individual looking to get a drug test done today or an employer looking to get a pre-employment drug test done today, ordering a test online is easier than ever! Just submit your order online, receive your test authorization by email, go to your local clinic to be tested, and receive your test results in 24 to 48 hours.

Hours of Operation

Monday 8AM–12PM, 1–4:30PM
Tuesday 8AM–12PM, 1–4:30PM
Wednesday 8AM–12PM, 1–4:30PM
Thursday 8AM–12PM, 1–4:30PM
Friday 8AM–12:30PM, 1–3PM
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed

Closed Dec. 25, Dec. 26 and Jan. 1

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact our lab.