What Drugs Show Up on a Drug Test? | Sober College (2023)

What Drugs Show Up on a Drug Test? | Sober College (1)

Category: Alcohol Abuse and Addiction, ,

If you suspect your child is using drugs and is being dishonest about it, you may be looking for ways to find out the truth. While there are several signs your child can exhibit that indicate substance abuse is a problem, you may still want concrete evidence of what they are using and how serious the problem may be.

Administering a drug test is one of the easiest ways to determine what your child is using. There are numerous types of drug tests available and each one has the ability to detect different forms of drugs and the presence of substances in the system for different periods of time after use has occurred.

The Most Common Types of Drug Tests

There are numerous types of drug tests available and it is important to understand the differences between them before proceeding. The most common drug tests administered are:

(Video) How to Pass a Drug Test (After Doing Lots of Drugs) | Vanity Code | Vanity Fair

  • At-home drug tests
  • Hair drug tests
  • Blood drug tests

Some drug tests are more effective at detecting substances than others and may be able to identify a wider array of substances in the system. The type of drug used, the form of drug test administered, and the individual are all factors to consider when evaluating the results. While some options are more inexpensive, they may not be as effective at identifying levels of a substance in the system or may be easy to cheat. For example, urine samples and at-home drug tests may be easy to cheat, especially in situations where the collection of the specimen is not monitored.

At-Home Drug Tests

Home drug tests are one of the first many opt to try. They serve as both a preventive measure and an investigative option. Because your child knows they will be regularly tested, they should be less likely to use drugs. If you suspect they are already using, it can help you determine if there is a need for treatment, but actions must be taken following positive results.

At-home drug tests are relatively inexpensive and can be ordered online or found in stores. These kits typically come with a collection cup and test strips to administer at home. There are options for both 5-panel and 10-panel tests.

5-panel tests can identify:

  • Cocaine
  • Methamphetamines
  • Opiates
  • PCP
  • Marijuana

A 10-panel test can identify these as well:

  • Benzodiazepines
  • Propoxyphene
  • Methadone
  • Barbiturates
  • Methaqualone
(Video) Here's what your drug test will look like

Because they can only identify a limited amount of substances, they may be able to identify the type of drug your child is using. Additionally, at-home tests can make it easier for your child to cheat the test. With access to the Internet, your child can easily find ways to work around the test and pass it.

It is also important to consider the potential backlash that may develop as a result of administering an at-home drug test. Your child may feel as though it is an invasion of their privacy and possibly damage your relationship. Be prepared for your child to be resentful and possibly develop other behavioral issues as a result.

Hair Drug Tests

Hair drug tests are minimally invasive and can be purchased over the counter in some places. Hair drug tests can identify:

  • Cocaine
  • Marijuana
  • Amphetamines
  • Opiates
  • PCP
  • Marijuana

These types of drug tests are becoming more popular because they are nearly impossible to cheat. Hair testing can detect drugs for up to 90 days after use and substance use is impossible to wash out or mask. You can choose different panels of tests and these are able to detect the same substances a urine test would find.

This form of test requires a person to provide a sample that is 1.5 inches in length. If the person shaves their head, it is possible to also test body hair. If no hair is available, a urine test may be administered instead.

Blood Drug Tests

Blood drug tests are the most expensive and the most invasive, but they are also the most accurate. This form of testing is often used in legal situations, such as testing a person who is suspected of driving under the influence. Blood drug tests must be administered in a medical setting. While they are the most accurate, they also have the shortest detection period, meaning that the test must be conducted relatively close to the time use occurs.

(Video) Want to pass your drug test? Do these five things.

Blood testing can identify:

  • Cocaine
  • Codeine
  • LSD
  • PCP
  • Marijuana
  • Amphetamines
  • Methamphetamines
  • Barbiturates
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Cotinine

This form of testing is virtually impossible to cheat, but they can be passed if a person engages in behaviors to try and flush the drug out of their system.

What Drugs are Undetectable in a Drug Test?

Some drug tests are unable to detect specific drugs making it important to try and find evidence of what substance you think your child is using. This can help you choose what form of drug test to use. For example, at-home drug tests are unable to detect hallucinogens or psychedelic drugs such as LSD or mushrooms.

Additionally, some drugs are unable to be detected because they are constantly changing. Synthetic drugs, also known as designer drugs, are substances manufactured in labs. Substances such as bath salts are constantly being changed to make them undetectable and avoid laws regarding legality.

(Video) Chemistry: Drug of Abuse Urine Screening Test (DAU)

How Far Back Can a Drug Test Detect Drugs?

Timing is key if you suspect your child is using drugs. Depending on the substance abused, some can pass through the system more quickly than others. It is important to administer a test as soon as possible to identify what your child is using. Below are detection periods for some of the most commonly abused drugs:

DrugHow Soon After Use Does it
Show on a Drug Test?
How Long After Using Will it
Continue to Show on a Drug Test?
Cocaine (Crack)2-62-3
Heroin (Opiates)2-61-3

How Accurate are Drug Tests?

Drug tests help you identify if substance abuse is occurring, but some are more effective than others. For example, at-home tests are often used because they are the least expensive and easy to administer, but they are not as advanced as lab testing. While they can identify drugs are in the system, they cannot tell you the amount. In this case, it is recommended that a positive at-home test be sent to a lab for further analysis.

Hair drug tests have become more popular recently because they of their accuracy, however, they can be expensive and can take a long period of time to process. Blood tests are the most accurate form of testing available, however, they are not often conducted because they require a person to be in a medical setting, can be quite costly, and are more invasive than other options. Unlike other tests, blood tests can tell you how much of a substance is in a person’s system at the time of the test.

Common Ways to Beat a Drug Test

There are numerous ways a person may try to beat a drug test. It is important to not give your child advanced notice of the test in order to minimize the likelihood of this occurring. If your child is aware of an upcoming drug test, they may research the window of time drugs are able to be detected to ensure the test does not return positive.

Some of the most common ways your child may attempt to cheat a drug test include:

  • Getting urine from a friend: A drug-free friend may provide urine to your child so they can pass a test.
  • Using synthetic urine: Synthetic urine can be purchased online in both powdered and liquid form. These can, however, be detected on a drug test.
  • Drinking lots of water: Your child may attempt to flush substances from their system by drinking a lot of water. This can also dilute a urine sample.
  • Exercising and dieting: Depending on the drug they use some substances can be flushed from the system using exercise and dieting.

Your child may also attempt to tamper with a test if unmonitored when administered. They may also use detox kits to try and flush their system and minimize the presence of substances in their system.

What to do if Your Child Tests Positive on a Drug Test?

Regardless of the method you choose, taking action following a positive drug test is important. If you use an at-home kit, be sure to send the sample to a lab for further testing. Administering a drug test without follow-up does not benefit your child and may put them on high alert to be more careful with their use to avoid detection in the future.

(Video) THC Drug Testing: Will you PASS or FAIL?

Send us a message for more information about next steps to take following a positive drug test. We can connect you with specialists who can assess your child’s needs and make recommendations for treatment options.



What do college drug tests look for? ›

The NCAA tests for steroids, peptide hormones and masking agents year-round and also tests for stimulants and recreational drugs during championships. Member schools also may test for these substances as part of their athletics department drug-deterrence programs.

What kind of drugs show up in a urine drug test? ›

What do these tests do? These tests indicate if one or more prescription or illegal drugs are present in urine. These tests detect the presence of drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, opiates, methamphetamine, amphetamines, PCP, benzodiazepine, barbiturates, methadone, tricyclic antidepressants, ecstasy, and oxycodone.

What drugs fail a drug test? ›

Medications that may cause false positives
  • Dextromethorphan (Robitussin, Delsym) Dextromethorphan is the main ingredient in many OTC cough suppressants. ...
  • Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) ...
  • Certain decongestants. ...
  • Phentermine. ...
  • NSAIDs. ...
  • Some antidepressants. ...
  • Quetiapine. ...
  • Proton pump inhibitors.
Jul 14, 2022

What drugs are tested in a 12 panel drug screen? ›

This panel contains the following components: Amphetamine, Barbiturates, Benzodiazepines, Cocaine, Methadone, Methamphetamine, Opiates, Oxycodone, Phencyclidine, Propoxyphene, Cannabinoids (THC), and Tricyclic Antidepressants or their metabolites.

What happens if you fail a drug test as a college athlete? ›

Failing a test for an NCAA-banned drug means the student-athlete cannot take part in any regular-season or postseason competition, unless a medical exception is granted.

How far back does a lab urine test go? ›

What is the detection window for a lab-based, urine drug test? A: Urine drug testing typically detects recent drug use in the previous 24 to 72 hours.

What drugs test positive on a drug test? ›

Drug tests commonly test for:
  • Alcohol.
  • Amphetamines, including methamphetamine.
  • Barbiturates, such as phenobarbital and secobarbital.
  • Benzodiazepines, such as alprazolam or clonazepam.
  • Cocaine.
  • Marijuana (THC)
  • Opioids and opiates, such as heroin, codeine, oxycodone, morphine, hydrocodone, and fentanyl.
  • Phencyclidine (PCP)
Jun 7, 2022

What should you not do before a urine test? ›

- Avoid alcohol, coffee, tea, tobacco and strenuous exercise for 24 hours prior to collection and up to collection time. - Do not consume avocados, bananas, eggplant, pineapples, plums, tomatoes or walnuts for 48 hours before the test.

What is the difference between drug test and drug screen? ›

A drug test and a drug screening are often used interchangeably, but there are notable differences between the two terms. In general, a drug test is more extensive and accurate than a drug screening, whereas a drug screening provides faster results and is a more cost-effective approach.

Does CBD show up on a 10 panel drug screen? ›

The presence of CBD itself won't show up on a drug test. However, the use of certain CBD products could, in theory, result in a positive test if there are low levels of THC present. THC sometimes finds its way into CBD products due to contamination in the manufacturing process.

What are the 10 drugs on a 10 panel drug test? ›

A 10-panel drug test screens for the following drug types:
  • Amphetamines.
  • Cocaine.
  • Marijuana.
  • Opiates.
  • Phencyclidine (PCP)
  • Barbiturates.
  • Benzodiazepines.
  • Propoxyphene.
Dec 2, 2022

Can ibuprofen cause false positive on drug test? ›

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (including ibuprofen and naproxen) (2,3) as well as proton pump inhibitors (specifically pantoprazole) (3) have been reported to cause false positives on urine drug screens.

What makes a drug test false negative? ›

False-negative results occur when a drug or metabolite is present at such low levels that it is not detected. Confirmatory testing is essential to distinguish a true negative from a false negative. Contaminants can also interfere with the immunoassay's ability to detect the presence of drugs.

What are the chances of failing a drug test? ›

How Often Do People Fail Drug Tests? In 2019, the percentage of US drug test failures reached 4.5%—the highest rate in 16 years.

How many times do college athletes get drug tested? ›

For student-athletes, being drug tested isn't something new. Nearly every other week, athletes are randomly tested for various banned substances by the NCAA, the Big Ten Conference and by their respective universities.

Can NCAA athletes take CBD? ›

CANNABINOIDS: Cannabinoids include cannabis and cannabidiol (CBD). Cannabis use is linked to anxiety, panic reactions, respiratory damage, short-term memory impairment and a decreased focus on goals and personal achievement. Cannabinoids are banned by the NCAA and can result in suspension.

Do college coaches drug test? ›

Coach Testing Overview

While the NCAA does not require coaches to be drug tested, most schools perform a comprehensive background check, including drug testing, as an initial requirement of employment.

Is it better to fail a DOT drug test or refuse? ›

Is a DOT Drug Test Refusal the Same as a Failed Drug Test? Refusing to take a drug test has the same consequences as failing a DOT drug test. Your employer must immediately remove you from safety-sensitive duties, per DOT regulations.

What drugs will make you fail a DOT drug test? ›

DOT drug tests require laboratory testing (49 CFR Part 40 Subpart F) for the following five classes of drugs:
  • Marijuana.
  • Cocaine.
  • Opiates – opium and codeine derivatives.
  • Amphetamines and methamphetamines.
  • Phencyclidine – PCP.
Jul 22, 2021

What happens if you test positive on a NCAA drug test? ›

1. A student-athlete who tests positive for an NCAA banned drug will be declared ineligible for participation in postseason and regular-season competition (unless a medical exception is granted).

How long does a NCAA drug test take? ›

Student-athletes are required to provide a urine specimen under observation by a doping control officer designated by the NCAA's drug-testing agency. The process can be completed in less than 20 minutes, but timing depends on the student-athlete's ability to provide a specimen of adequate volume and gravity.

Do they test for nicotine in NCAA? ›

The reason the NCAA doesn't test for nicotine is because it is not on its list of banned substances, Wilfert said. "It is not included in the banned drug list, probably because the drug testing program is more about performance enhancement," Wilfert said.

Does the NCAA test for CBD? ›

Cannabinoids are banned by the NCAA and can result in suspension.

Can NCAA athletes smoke cigarettes? ›

Smoking damages lung tissue and reduces lung capacity. Spit tobacco use contributes to inflammation of soft tissue in the mouth and raises the risk of oral cancer. Tobacco use in all forms is prohibited during practice and competition by student- athletes and game personnel, and may result in ejection from the game.

Can you fail an NCAA drug test for alcohol? ›

There are thousands of substances banned by the NCAA. A drug test does not test for every possible banned substance. The NCAA determines which substances are tested with each drug test. Alcohol is not a banned substance by the NCAA.

What is the penalty for failing a drug test in the NCAA? ›

Student-athletes lose one full year of eligibility for the first offense (25 percent of their total eligibility) and are withheld from competition for a full season. A second positive test for street drugs results in another lost year of eligibility and year withheld from competition.

Does the NCAA drug test everyone? ›

All student-athletes are subject to NCAA testing at NCAA championships or in conjunction with postseason bowl games. 4.6. 2. Student-athletes may be tested before, during or after NCAA championship events and postseason bowl games.

Does creatine show up on NCAA drug test? ›

Creatine is not a banned substance by the NCAA and there is no specific test to determine if an athlete is taking creatine. However, some creatine supplements have tested positive because they may contain other identifiable substances prohibited by the NCAA.

Does NCAA test for Adderall? ›

These stimulants are banned for use in NCAA competition for both performance and health reasons, and using them may result in a positive drug test and loss of eligibility, unless the student- athlete provides adequate documentation of a diagnostic evaluation for ADHD and appropriate monitoring of treatment.


1. How Accurate Are Drug Tests?
2. Pat McAfee Reveals How NFL Players Beat Drug Tests
(The Pat McAfee Show)
3. In Focus: The Drug Testing Process
(FOX Sports)
4. Cheating The System: Faking a Drug Test
(NBC 26)
5. How to Pass a Drug Test in 4 hours! (100% Works & Cheap) 2021 Method
(Corey CCC)
6. Intervention: HEAVY Alcohol & Drug Addiction Takes Over Krystal’s Life After Traumatic Past | A&E
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Delena Feil

Last Updated: 07/28/2023

Views: 6282

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (45 voted)

Reviews: 84% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Delena Feil

Birthday: 1998-08-29

Address: 747 Lubowitz Run, Sidmouth, HI 90646-5543

Phone: +99513241752844

Job: Design Supervisor

Hobby: Digital arts, Lacemaking, Air sports, Running, Scouting, Shooting, Puzzles

Introduction: My name is Delena Feil, I am a clean, splendid, calm, fancy, jolly, bright, faithful person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.