How to test for drugs around the home and find the evidence.
This article is a guide on how to test for drugs around the home, what to do when you find them and how to detect what the drug is. Then how to test a family member based on the evidence you find. We hope that the information in this article will help you and give you peace of mind.
Observing the dangers of drugs use.
We all know that kids like to explore the unknown, many times peer pressure will make your teen do something they may not otherwise do. Education and guidance should be a parents responsibility to guide their teen on the dangers of drug abuse and how to avoid the perils of addiction.
Where do you as a parent start? If you suspect weird or uncommon activity from your teen or notice strange behavior then it might be a sign that they are using drugs. It’s not uncommon and the situation is getting worse. And it’s not just illicit street drugs that may be the issue here. We have noticed a sharp increase in the use of prescriptions drugs as well. We talk about teens here but in reality, it could be anyone in your family.
Where to look and how to test for drugs around the home.
The illustrations above give a clear indication of where your teens may possibly hide drugs. It could be anywhere in the home, but more likely it will be in their own room, a bedroom for example. So start there and explore every possible place.
Explore their bedroom first.
Bedrooms are the natural place to start your investigation. Teens believe that they can hide them from you, but if you use the illustrations above, it guides you on where to look. Check in and around the bed, the closet, look in pockets in clothing, check computers, pens, posters and their personal items.
How to test for drugs around the home.
Parents like the fact that they can detect and identify drugs found around the home then test the suspects in the privacy of their own home. Prior to this, it was difficult to establish any sign of drug use other than finding paraphernalia or possibly baggies containing unknown drugs and taking them to a laboratory to be analyzed. But now, if you find a baggie or paraphernalia it’s now possible to know exactly what the drug was or what was smoked in that pipe you found. Of course, that’s not the whole story.
How do you identify the drugs you find?
New technology, the first of its kind has made it possible to buy a surface drug test that will detect and identify suspicious substances in any place. These test kits offer a major breakthrough in technology to test for unknown substances in and around the home. The benefit for parents is they can use them without the need for professional training. The clear benefit of these tests is their low cost. At this point, no one need know as all you are doing is an initial investigation. If you don’t find drugs around the home then there are no awkward accusations.
Surface drug test kits. (wet chemistry)
Even if you don’t find physical evidence, these new surface drug tests can detect and identify trace amounts of drug residue in and on almost anything. They are simple to use, easy to interpret and 100% safe. They are perfect for concerned parents, school administrators, youth workers, human resources. They were primarily designed for the military and law enforcement.
The test uses advanced wet chemistry technology which makes it safe and user-friendly. And what makes it so good is it produces conclusive proof of what the drug is. The illustration above was sent to us by a customer who positively identified Cocaine with one of these tests.
Surface drug test kits. (immunoassay)
The other option looks similar to a regular urine dip test. It works is a different way to wet chemistry example above. It can detect twelve different drugs simply by swiping the fingers over a suspect item and when mixed with the buffer liquid provided, with positively identify what is found. So for example, if you wanted to see if a credit card had been used around cocaine, the process would be very straightforward. See image below. It demonstrates how to wipe the fingers of the assay over the credit card, dip the tips of the test into the supplied buffered solution and wait to see the result. These tests are simple to use and simple to interpret, no professional understanding is needed.
Is a family member using drugs?
It’s natural for you to trust your family. But, we all know the facts about drug abuse. Many of us have experimented at some point in our lives mainly to see what all the fuss is about. We know peer pressure is intense and the temptations are real. Even the best of kids can make poor choices when it comes to experimenting with drugs and alcohol. Testing a family member at home is not as difficult as you think. Testing for drugs with their urine is the best and easiest way to get a reliable answer to one of the most difficult questions facing parents today.
How to test for drugs around the home – start by testing their urine.
Here is our advice for testing family members. This advice works and if you stick to it, you are guaranteed a favorable outcome:
- Never, ever give notice or warning that you are about to test family member. It’s best to test them first thing in the morning as they wake up. Escort them directly to the bathroom. Explain to them what you are doing and why.
- Their first urination of the day is best as it’s typically the most concentrated. It’s the best for detecting drugs they may have used.
- Always supervise the collection of urine from start to finish, and stay in the bathrooms while they urinate.
- Have them hand you the urine-filled cup immediately after collection. Check the temperature it should be between 93 to 96º F. The exterior of the cup will feel warm to the touch.
- Once you have obtained the urine sample, it’s now time to perform the test. Never leave the sample unattended until you have completed the test and satisfied the result. This is important because you may need to send the sample to a lab for confirmatory testing.
- Presumed positive samples should be packaged and sealed with tape to overt any tampering. (See below on how to interpret the test.)
- A negative sample does not need to be sent to a lab for further testing.
Conclusion: Drug Test Kits are only as accurate as the urine sample being tested. Keep in mind that urine samples can easily be compromised or adulterated, closely supervise the entire testing process.
Here are examples of how urine samples can be tampered with:
- Common cleaning products and household liquids such as toilet-bowl cleaners, bleach, floor or tile cleaners, glue, and soaps) can be used as adulterants. Adulterants can also be placed on fingertips and hands and rubbed inside the test cup prior to sample collection. Make sure they wash their hands prior to urine collection.
- Be particularly aware of whether they are concealing small bottles such as eye-drops or ear-drop. They’re easy to hide and can be used to hold many kinds of adulterants. (These may cause the test to fail).
- Be aware that if your teen dilutes their sample with water from the toilet bowl, you may want to add food coloring to the bowl. It may even be necessary to shut off the water to the toilet and sinks prior to testing. Abusers are not stupid and they know all the tricks to get a clean test.
- To be certain that there is no funny business going on, use an adulterant test. These tests will give you a clear idea of how good their sample is prior to testing. If their sample has been adulterated, make them provide a new sample.
Specimen or Adulterant testing.
This diagram above illustrates what to expect when checking for adulterants. Parents should tell their teens why they are checking their teen’s urine sample. Tell them you are checking for signs of contamination prior to the drug test. The process once again is simple. Dip a new specimen strip into the newly collected urine for a few seconds, gently remove any excess urine from the strip and compare the colors against the chart. Once you are satisfied the sample has not been adulterated, you can then proceed with the urine drug test. If you suspect adulteration, ask them to provide a fresh sample.
What is a urine drug test and how to interpret it?
All urine drug tests used at home or the workplace use a Thin Layer Chromatography process. You will notice that the strips that protrude from the test card are thin and about 3/16″ wide. These are called panels. Each panel or test strip absorbs urine taken from the sample. The urine then migrates along the panel via capillary action to the test or reagent area. It takes just a few minutes to happen. A drug test cup uses the same method, the difference is the strips or panels are integrated within the cup.
The test area is the membrane test area. This is where you see the pinkish red lines appear when the test has completed. (See illustrations below.)
- The absorbent material of each test strip migrates the urine sample along the strip.
- The urine sample reaches the test area and encounters special formulation of molecules. This migration along the test strip interacts with drug-specific antibodies that only react to metabolites for the specific drug being tested.
- If the urine sample does not contain the specific drug metabolites being tested, then these special molecules react with the antibodies to produce a pinkish red color line.
- When the line appears as this pinkish red color the test is Negative for the drug being tested.
- If the urine sample does contain the specific drug metabolites being tested, then the molecules do not react with the reagent and no line appears.
- When the molecules do not react, it generally indicates a Presumptive Positive for the drug being tested.
- Finally, the urine sample reaches the Control lines at the top of the test strip where a reagent makes the molecules turn a pinkish red color to indicate that the test worked properly.
- When the Control lines turn a pinkish red, it means the test completed correctly and indicates the test worked as expected.
All rapid drug test kits are considered a “screening test.” A screening test is a preliminary test that gives a clear indication of presumed positive or negative. We recommend all Presumptive Positive Results be sent to the laboratory for confirmatory testing. The preferred method for this is called gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). It is considered the gold standard in laboratory testing for urine samples.
In conclusion, how to test for drugs around the home should now be easier with a clearer understanding of what is needed for a drug-free home. Investigate everywhere, check for hiding places where drugs may be concealed. Test suspected surfaces, paraphernalia for drugs being abused and finally, test your family as described. Advise them about the perils of abusing drugs and help to steer them in a new direction. They know you now have the upper hand and if there is a suspicion in the future, you have the tools to deal with the problem. Drugs, drug paraphernalia, and drug abuse can be eradicated if you follow our advice and use the tools we recommend.
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