What’s the Difference Between a Drug Test vs. a Drug Screening?

One of the most difficult things that a lot of marijuana users have to navigate around carefully is drug tests.
It is shown that, in more than 75% of the Fortune 500 companies, the employees are regularly drug tested. There are many corporations that still place strict requirements on what their employees can put into their bodies.
If these tests discover some of the substances that are on the banned list, there will often be very severe consequences. A lot of the time, this could mean suspension or even completely losing your job.
People use cannabis for a wide variety of reasons. Some simply like the way it helps them relaxed, whereas others need it to give them relief from chronic pain or to help quell their anxiety levels.
With these areas of their well-being being improved as a result of their cannabis use, it makes them more productive and efficient when it comes to their professional life, which is only going to be a good thing for their employers.
However, cannabis is still tested for by many companies, which is a cause of concern for people medicating with it. While some may decide to stop consuming cannabis and related products in case they are randomly tested, others simply cannot go without as the pros outweigh the cons for them.
Cannabis generally stays in the system longer than many other drugs, which is also troublesome. Therefore, the people need to be armed with as much knowledge as possible about these tests and what they can do in order to pass them.
One of the big questions that is asked frequently is what the difference between a drug screening and a drug test is.

What is the main difference between a drug screening and a drug test?

A lot of companies will regularly test their workers for the presence of drugs. Hopefully these are not random tests that cannot be prepared for in advance, or else it is a lot more difficult to pass them if you are continuing to smoke cannabis.
Companies that test for cannabis are worried that if their workers are being influenced by these drugs, their job performance will suffer and they may have issues when dealing with clients or just generally not be able to perform their work at an optimal level.
Usually, there is a specialist company hired by the employer who will conduct these tests, whether they are drug screens or drug tests. While they seem to be somewhat similar simply by judging by their names, they have very significant differences.
Drug screens are very quick to administer, but drug tests will be slower. Drug screening is much more cost effective and a quick method in which a batch of samples can be reviewed. However, screens are not selective, so they will react to the presence of legal drugs, throwing up a positive result. This means that people who have ingested the likes of ibuprofen or poppy seeds even can have tests that show up as a false positive.
Drug tests are a lot more accurate when it comes to identifying the presence of illegal drugs and is a lot more selective and reactive.
This means that they are more accurate than drug screens and it is not common for there to be false positive results when using this type of testing. Of course, these tests are more complex and therefore will cost more to administer, and it will take a longer amount of time for the results to be processed.
Both drug screening and tests are used as a tool for risk management in many workplaces. They are said to lead to lower levels of turnover in workers and reduce the level of absences and injuries in the workplace.
Therefore, it is said that the workplace will be a more productive and safer environment as a result of having regular drug testing. Very often, there will be drug testing administered to incoming employees to nip any issues in the bud.

What is a mixed test?

Sometimes, an employer will use what is called a mixed test. This is a method which is used to combine the best of both drug tests and drug screens.
In this case, each and every sample is screened, and those which throw up a positive result will then be submitted for a more comprehensive drug test.
If the samples come back as negative on the drug screen, then they are automatically assumed to be drug-free. This is one of the main methods used by many government authorities and major companies across the world.
A mixed test is a lot more accurate and inexpensive than using one or the other, as only questionable samples will then be submitted for a full drug test.

Different types of drug tests

Most of the time with drug tests that are looking for the presence of cannabis, blood tests are not used. This is because the metabolites of THC are only in the bloodstream for a very short period of time after consumption.
This is the main reason why blood or saliva tests are more commonly used if you were involved in a car accident, for example, and the authorities want to check if you were under the influence of alcohol or some sort of drug that played a role in the incident.
In terms of cannabis, the most effective form of identification as a result will be testing the urine. Urine tests are looking for metabolites of the main psychoactive compound found in marijuana – THC.
Some of the THC metabolites exit the body within the initial 20 hours after you have smoked weed, but there are some main ones that stay in the system a lot longer than this. These metabolites will be stored in pockets of fat in the body and can stay there for as long as two weeks. Then, it will take another five days or so for them to fully exit the body.
It is more likely that a person who regularly consumes marijuana will have these THC metabolites present in their urine for a longer period than someone who only consumes cannabis on a very occasional basis.
For the most part, it is agreed by testers that marijuana metabolites can be identified in the urine of a person for the first two weeks following consumption. However, those who consistently consume cannabis can end up having a positive result for as long as 45 days after they have last consumed cannabis and the heaviest users could have it in their system for as long as 90 days. This is why drug testing is so tough for many people who use cannabis on a regular basis.
While there are some methods that peopleuse to get the metabolites out of their system quicker, there are a lot of myths out there.
This is why the only proper effective method of passing a drug test will be to completely abstain from using cannabis for the defined period of time, depending on your usage level. Of course, if you are tested randomly, then there is no way to prepare accordingly.

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