Pass a Urine Drug Test: Everything You Need to Know

PUBLISHED: Monday, October 25, 2021

How to Pass a Urine Drug Test

How to Pass a Urine Drug Test

Despite the legalization of marijuana in some states in America, certain companies may still require you to pass a urine drug test, which is stressful. So if you want to know how to beat a urine drug test to grab an employment opportunity, you should read on. And if you wish to see the products used to pass a urine drug test, here are our popular and practical solutions.

Table of Contents

What is urinalysis?

What is urinalysis

urine sample in a specimen cup

A urinalysis (UA) is a relatively inexpensive medical test commonly performed in healthcare facilities (e.g., hospitals, laboratories, and urgent-care facilities). A urine sample may be collected within the facility or at home, but the urine's components are examined by a qualified medical technologist in a laboratory.

The test is simple, and it can be done for a number of reasons:

  • To diagnose an illness through its associated symptoms. Painful or frequent urination, blood in the urine, and back pain, among others, may indicate an underlying medical condition.
  • To monitor pre-existing medical conditions. If you have diabetes, liver disease, or kidney problems, your doctor will require urinalysis to evaluate if the disease has progressed and if your treatment is effective.
  • To check your overall health. Urinalysis is usually part of the procedures done during a pregnancy checkup, a regular medical exam, the preparation for surgery, or admission to the hospital.
  • To check for drug use. Work, federal, or state guidelines may require employees to subject themselves to a drug test.
How is urine drug test done?

How is urine drug test done

  • Unsupervised Drug Test

    You collect a clean-catch urine sample, about 45 to 60 mL, using a cup provided by the laboratory. When you use the toilet, you should clean your genitals first before urinating. A technician will provide you with a moist cloth for that purpose.

    When you urinate, you should only collect the midstream part of your urine. Send the sample to the technician as soon as you're done urinating.

    If you're doing a home test, make sure you send the urine sample to the laboratory within an hour of collecting your urine. Unless your doctor has specific instructions, refrigerate the sample if you can't deliver the sample immediately.

    You will be informed if your urine sample doesn't meet the accepted criteria. In that case, you'll have to send another sample.

  • Supervised Drug Test

    nurse holding a test tube of urine sample

    Note that you are supposed to sign documents informing you about the chain of custody during drug tests. You may be asked to use a bathroom that's designed specifically for drug tests, and these are the usual procedures:

    • The person in charge of the test will give you a collection cup for your urine sample.
    • You have to leave your belongings in a different room, so you can't take anything with you. There should be nothing in your pockets as well.
    • In some instances, test-compliance measures will require you to be accompanied to the bathroom by a technician or a nurse. This person is of the same gender as you are. If this does happen, you should be informed as to why it is being done.
    • The technician will give you a moist cloth you can use to clean your genitals. This is done to ensure a clean-catch sample.
    • When you urinate, collect the midstream part of your urine. You need 45 to 60 mL for a valid urine sample.
    • Seal the container lid once you've finished urinating, and send your sample to the technician or the person in charge of collection.
    • The sample is split into two batches, and this procedure is done in front of you. You and the technician must always keep your eyes on the urine specimen until it is sealed and ready for the actual testing.
What do you look for in a urine drug test?

What do you look for in a urine drug test?

The analysis involves evaluating the physical appearance of the urine and using a microscope to examine the urine's chemicals and particles. Medical technicians usually look at the following factors:

  • Color: whether the urine is clear, yellow, red, brown, or even the color of straw or tea
  • Cloudiness: if the urine is turbid or clear
  • Concentration: if the urine has more solutes than it has water
  • Odor: if the urine has a particular smell (e.g., sweet or pungent)
  • Chemical composition: if there is blood, acid, or another substance present in the urine
  • Cells, cell parts, and bacteria: if the urine contains particles such as red blood cells, bacteria, and protein

An abnormality in any of the items listed above may indicate an infection or a disease that cannot be easily detected by a simple look at the patient's physical state.

In the case of a urine drug test, the medical technologist looks for the presence of the substances listed below. Your employer and/or state or federal regulations may also require testing for other drugs.

  • Amphetamines: methamphetamine
  • Cocaine
  • Marijuana: delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
  • Opiates: heroin, morphine, codeine
  • Phencyclidine (PCP)

To rule out the possibility of having a tampered urine sample, a technician will check the following:

  • Temperature: 90°F (32.2°C) to 100°F (37.7°C)
  • Acidity (pH): 4.5 to 8.5
  • Appearance
  • Concentration: urine that's too diluted raises suspicions
  • Adulterants
How long does the THC stay in the urine?

How long does the THC stay in the urine

Many factors can affect the detection time of THC in your urine samples. Here are some of them:

  • The half-life of marijuana
  • The frequency of marijuana use
  • How marijuana was administered
  • The fluid balance and hydration state of the patient
  • A testing laboratory reference range in detecting THC metabolites

multi-drug screen test device testing a urine sample

For many drugs, the usual time is 2 to 4 days. For chronic users, THC can remain in the body for 3 to 4 weeks (or longer) after the last use. Some drugs have a longer half-life, so they stay longer in the body.

In the case of hair drug tests, drugs like amphetamine, cocaine, and marijuana can also be detected. The metabolites can be detected even after six months since the last use of the drug.

Substances and their detection periods in urine

  1. Benzodiazepines (e.g., alprazolam, diazepam, temazepam) have 1 - 7 days detection time or longer, depending on the half-life, drug, or chronic use.
  2. Cannabinoids (e.g., marijuana) have 3 to 28 days detection time, depending on frequency of use.
  3. Cocaine has 1 to 3 days detection time.
  4. Methamphetamine or amphetamine has 2 to 5 days detection time.
  5. Methylenedioxymethamphetamine has 2 to 5 days detection time.
  6. Opioids (e.g., morphine and codeine) have 1 to 2 days detection time.
  7. Steroids (e.g., testosterone and stanozolol) have days to months detection time, depending on the half-life of the steroid.

table with drug names and their detection times in urine Source:

What to expect during the urine drug test?

What to expect during the urine drug test

You can get your results pretty quickly, usually within a few days after testing. For example, if you test negative, you may get the results within 24 hours. However, if you test positive, it may take a few days or longer, as additional evaluation may be required.

The most basic way of detecting drugs in the body is through immunoassay. This procedure uses antibodies to determine the presence of metabolites of the usual drugs of abuse. An immunoassay is inexpensive, but it is also susceptible to yielding false positives or false negatives.

If you do test positive for THC or other substances, a medical review officer (MRO) will ask about your drug intake. You will need another urine specimen, which will go through gas chromatography and mass spectrometry (GC/MS).

This is a more intricate procedure and is used to validate the positive result from the immunoassay. It involves analyzing a urine sample by separating the chemical components in the urine to identify the compounds and determine the purity of the sample.

Sometimes, a false positive happens. This may be because of medication you have taken or food you've eaten. If you are on temporary or maintenance medication, it is important to declare this before the drug test.

urine drug test strips with results

This phenomenon is usually common in many professional athletes who yielded positive results when tested for illegal substances. Common medications like amitriptyline, bupropion, dextromethorphan, diltiazem, and diphenhydramine are some of the potential culprits.

What can you do to pass the urine drug test?

How to pass a urine drug test

It is not unusual to worry about passing a urine drug test. But now that you are quite familiar about the process and what you can expect from it, you can take the following steps to ensure you will get through the hurdle.

Dilute the concentration of the substance in your system

To pass the urine drug test, you need to dilute the concentration of the substance below the threshold of detection. You can do this by increasing your fluid intake and urine flow, ideally, days before the test to avoid flushing the marijuana out of your system only to lead it straight to the specimen cup.

Drinking a lot of water helps, so you should try to drink as much as your bladder can take. While that is very helpful, you can also consider taking in a hefty dose of (50 to 100 mg) of vitamin B2, readily available in B-complex multivitamins. This will ensure your urine will take the yellow color as opposed to a clear, watery one that tends to raise the suspicions of collectors.

In case of very short notice, there are also simple tricks that can boost your fluid output and stimulate urination, making it easier and faster for you to dilute the drug concentration in your system. One of them is taking weak diuretics like coffee, cranberry juice, some food products, and over-the-counter pills used to retain water during the pre-menstruation cycle.

Aside from water and diuretics, some home remedies can aid your drug test as well.

  1. Doing exercise can increase your metabolism and detoxify THC stored in your body.
  2. Taking aspirin can help absorb chemicals in your body, making it easier to get rid of toxins. Four tablets of aspirin are recommended before the test.
  3. If you're allowed to take your sample from home, bleach or eye drops in your urine can also dilute it.
  4. Avoiding junk food and red meat is encouraged since these are usually harder to digest. Instead, focus on increasing your fiber intake to make it easier for your body to digest the culpable substances.

Make use of detox products.

There are many detox products tailored for drug tests, and they generally work. However, it takes time, which is sometimes hard to come by when requested for a test on short notice. For a selection of detox products, see our detoxification programs.

toxin rid 10 day detox product

Detox in 3 to 7 days with a safe, natural detoxification product. If you have at least seven days before the test, going through a detoxification program is one of the best recourses. This will speed up your body's natural cleansing process, helping you get rid of THC in your system within the week. Programs like these usually include home-testing kits that you can use to verify whether your system is indeed clean or not.

Detox in 24 hours by using a same-day cleanser. If you're short on time, this one is your best bet. Some detoxification drinks can flush out your system within the day and can keep you clean for a period of 4 to 6 hours.

Consider the use of synthetic urine.

This option is usually the last resort, but it is possible. All you need is to buy synthetic urine, which mimics human urine's visual, chemical, and thermal properties. Synthetic urine comes in a kit that you need to mix and heat for it to work correctly. Although you should take caution when trying this out as it is unethical and prone to suspicion.

powdered human urine kit

The best way to deal with the prospect of taking a urine drug test is still to come prepared. Knowing that you will test negative before you even take the test can eliminate unnecessary stress and anxiety that can toll your health.

Test your pee before you take your test so you know you'll pass. Determining your marijuana intake can also help to let you know what other measures you should take to ensure you will test negative. One way to do this is through a marijuana drug test kit that is easy to use at home.

Unfortunately, taking marijuana can still jeopardize jobs and possibly lives in this day and age. This substance is still illegal in most states. Random drug tests and employment requirements are widespread, and knowing what you are going up against can put your mind at ease.

We hope you find this guide helpful in passing a urine drug test. By remembering what we have covered in this article, you can grab the employment opportunities that will better your life and equip you with the right skills to reach your highest potential. For other tips to pass a drug test, read Everything You Need to Know to Pass a Marijuana Drug Test. To browse our products used to pass a urine drug test, check out these solutions.