Drug Test Passing - Approximate Detection Times

Please Note: These detection times below apply only to urinalysis. See more below for hair, saliva or blood drug testing.

drug test detection times
Toxin / Substance Detection Period
Alcohol* 24 - 72 hours
Amphetamines 2 - 5 days
Barbiturates (Long-Acting) 2 - 4 weeks
Barbiturates (Short-Acting) 1 - 5 days
Benzodiazepines 7 - 10 days
Cannabinoids (THC, Marijuana) 14 - 60 days
Clenbuterol 4 - 7 days
Cocaine 3 - 7 days
Codeine 7 - 10 days
Euphoric (Mushrooms) 3 - 7 days
Hydrocodone* 4 - 7 days
Ketamine (Special K) 7 - 14 days
LSD (Acid - Lysergic Acid Diethylamide) 3 - 7 days
MDMA (Ecstasy) 3 - 7 days
Methadone 8 - 10 days
Nicotine (Cigarettes) 3 - 7 days
Opiates 8 - 10 days
Peptide Hormones Undetectable
Phencyclidine (PCP) 2 - 4 days
Phenobarbital 10 - 20 days
Propoxyphene 1 - 3 days
Steroids (Anabolic Oral)* 14 - 28 days
Steroids (Anabolic Parenterally)* 30 - 90 days

Shown above are drug test passing detection periods. These will indicate how long any particular toxin or substance will remain in your system since the time of use.

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Hair Drug Testing

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Saliva Drug Testing

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Blood Drug Testing

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False Positives

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Based on some of the following factors illustrated below, toxins can be detected in a urinalysis test:

Frequency and Amount: Small and rare use is typically detected for a shorter amount of time.

Your Metabolism: Users with a slow metabolism are more susceptible to longer detection periods of time as opposed to an individual with a high metabolism.

Height and Weight: An individual's metabolism is slower in a larger person as opposed to a smaller person. This results in users who are are heavier to maintain longer drug test passing detection times. Many toxins such as Cannabinoids (THC) and Phencyclidine (PCP) will store and accumulate in fatty lipid tissue in your body. Users are regularly use toxins such as these and have larger body mass are more prone to have longer detection periods.

Age: Typically with humans, as they age their metabolism will slow down which results in longer detection times of toxins.

Health: Metabolism is also known to slow down substantially in someone who has overall bad or deteriorating health. So naturally individuals of this type would be susceptible to longer detection periods.

Tolerance of Toxins: Individuals will generally metabolize substances more rapidly once they become more tolerant to them.

Urine pH: This is known to also have an impact on how long any particular substance can remain in your system. Highly acidic urine can result in shorter detection periods as opposed to low acidic urine can take longer to get out of your system.

How Long Will Substances/Toxins Be Detectable In a Hair Drug Test?

As a general rule, toxins will remain in your hair for however long your hair is. So for example if you've used toxins 2 months ago and still have hair on your body from that time, toxins can be detectable in a hair follicle sample. Typically a hair drug test administrator will snip 1 - 1.5 inches of hair from the scalp which represents about 90 days of growth. Head hair on a typical human will grow about a half inch per month.

False Positive Drug Tests

In many cases if you are surprised with a positive drug test and have used no substances at all, it can be due to the sample being contaminated or attributed to human error.

There are several substances that will cause an individual to test positive for toxins when this isn't actually correct. This is one of the main reasons why a drug test administrator will split the specimen into 2 separate samples.

You should pay close attention to this information as any potential employer or parole/probation officer would. These incorrect results run at a high percentage rate with respect to the EMIT (Enzyme multiplied immunoassay technique) test. This is also known as a "dip stick" test or a sample that would be tested "on the spot". Because these tests run at such a high false positive percentage rate, 1 error could cost you your job or even your freedom!

Many accredited labs attest to the fact that the EMIT test is wrong 25% to 30% of the time. This also can result in false positives from legal substances up to 38% of the time! There are more than 300 OTC (over the counter) substances that can cause false drug test passing positives on this EMIT test. Even worse, new things are being introduced every day.

Illustrated below are some of the several substances to avoid prior to taking a drug test.

» There are particular antibiotics such as Tetracycline and Penicillin that can possibly cause an incorrect test result for cocaine or heroin. Also included are weight loss pills, decongestants, herbal hay fever remedies, cold medicines, allergy medicines and pain relievers. This stands especially true with ones that contain ephedrine, pseudoephedrine, propylephedrine, phenylephrine, phenylpropanolamine and desoxyepherine.

» Some brand names are Accutrim, Actifed, Advil, Afrin, Aleve, Allerest 12 hour, Bayer Select, Dexatrim, Dimetapp, Dristan Cold Caplets, Drixoral Cold and Flu, Excedrin Extra Strength, Excedrin IB, Genpril, Mediprin, Midol 200, Motrin, Naproxen, Neosynephrine, Nuprin, Nyquil, Ornade, Pamprin, Robitussin Cold and Flu, Rufin, Sinex, Sudafed, Tavist-D, Triaminic, Tylenol Sinus Gelcaps and Vicks Inhaler.

» There are also asthma medications such as Marax, Bronkaid tablets and Primatine Tablets that can cause false positives as well.

» Poppy seeds that are typically fond on bagels or on sandwiches can also be an issue and are known to cause false positives for Cannabinoids. You more than likely would need to ingest a large amount of these but it is known to occur.

» There are cain based products too that can create false positives. This stands true especially with Novocain that you would get from a typical dental appointment for example. These products are known to cause an ongoing issue to test positive for cocaine.

Read more about different types of drug testing.

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