The future of drug testing is one to keep an eye on as more reliable drug testing, an increase in sensitive tests, tamper-proofing and keeping up with new designer drugs are often the topics discussed when it comes to this issue. However, there have become far more reasons for a drug test today. While the choice of which drugs to test for usually hinges on issues of addiction, physical harm, and the danger of actions while people are using the drugs, there is also an area of exception in professional and amateur sports as drug testing in sports which is designed to eliminate unfair competitive edges. There are also similar questions being raised regarding unfair mental advantages as some drugs enhance mental acuity and alertness. While many of these drugs are classified as dietary supplements and others usually are medications prescribed for other purposes but can be used or abused for new concentration or mental ability.
For example, Nootropics are substances which are intended to boost specific mental functions, such as attention, memory, and motivation. One of the most common and legal substances used for these purposes is caffeine. Nicotine is also another legal substance used for similar reasons, although evidence shows that long-term use of nicotine products can also have devastating health consequences.
In recent years, more and more substances have been used in this way, many are perfectly legal and appear to do little harm. Omega-3 fish oils, ginseng, lemon balm, sage, rosemary, tyrosine, and certain amino acids which are all available from health food and vitamin shops, have varied effects on mental function and memory. Prescription drugs such as Modafinil, which is typically used to treat narcolepsy has also been employed by the military and law enforcement for extended periods of wakefulness and alertness. Some users are now using this to boost mental acuity which has meant that questions are being raised about the fairness of using Modafinil in competitive areas. Some students at Cambridge and Oxford universities are calling for drug testing before exams, as they believe that some students are using drugs to cheat and gain an unfair advantage over other students. Proponents of such usage argue that such medications and supplements are the future of humanity, that just like exercise, practice, and studying they are ways of extending our abilities in a world that demands more performance and in a career landscape that is increasingly cutthroat and competitive.
But the question now is, Is this a legitimate area for drug testing? If people are doing better in exams, getting promotions in work or beating people into places at universities with the help of cognitive boosters, is this ok? While existing reasons for drug testing are not disappearing in the foreseeable future, the new horizons of the industry are uncertain–but increased opportunities for the testing industry seem inevitable.
Not just the uses of these drugs have changed but with that is the testing of drugs too, in today’s modern world, there comes another way of detecting drugs in individuals; using the hair! As it turns out hair drug testing is actually the most accurate method of detecting drug abuse in individuals. It can identify drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, and opiates to name a few. It is ten times more effective than urine drug tests which makes it easy for schools and employers to test students and employees to determine whether or not they have drugs in their system. Hair drug tests come in handy kits with instructions on how to get hair specimens, then send it to the laboratory for evaluation.
According to studies, when a person takes drugs, as with any other substances, such as food, medicines, or drinks, it mixes with their blood. The blood nourishes all parts of our bodies including our heads so if someone has taken drugs then hints of these chemicals then become trapped or filtered through the hair follicle, meaning that as the hair grows, these chemicals are stored in the hair and actually become a part of the hair itself. This means that testing the hair is extremely accurate and can trace if drugs have been taken over the past three months. A two-inch sample can give that person a drug history for four months. However, while hair drug testing is much more costly than urine testing, it is now widely used due to its effectiveness.
A hair drug test involves cutting a minimum of 50 strands of hair, and it must be cut approximately one and a half inches from the scalp, the hair is then sent to the drug testing laboratory and then screened and reviewed, then liquified for final testing.
One point of view to consider through – a positive test result does not automatically mean the person uses illegal drugs. Positive results are sometimes triggered by other legal substances for example if someone us on medication or taking maintenance medications, or over-the-counter medications. It is wise, therefore, that when the confirmation test comes back positive, it is essential for a doctor, nurse, or another specialist to review the results and determine if illegal drugs are indeed the guilty party.
People have attempted to beat hair drug testing with special shampoos, but this doesn’t actually work, others shave off their hair, but sad to say, toxins don’t leave the body anytime soon. If you are being kept in confinement, your hair will slowly grow back in, and your drug use history will come back for all to see with it.
While existing reasons for drug testing are not disappearing in the foreseeable future, the new horizons of the industry are uncertain–but increased opportunities for the testing industry seem inevitable.