Synthetic drugs are a major problem in the US right now. These legal highs, to give them their other name, are popular among young people. They are inexpensive, simple to come by and adamant. They are also highly dangerous.
K2 and Spice are forms of so-called synthetic marijuana that have killed users and caused mental health issues. Bath salts are another common form of this drug that has caused problems. The range of options is vast, and this is an easy recreational high for many. This includes workers looking for a hit after a long week.
Employers That Rely On Workplace Testing For Drugs Have Had A Problem With Synthetic Drugs For A While
Standard testing practices have been able to detect some of the more typical, expected drugs, but not legal highs. These synthetic drugs are often new, poorly understood and can easily slip by unnoticed in testing. Thankfully, many of America’s top testing labs have been working hard on important advancements in drug testing.
No breakthrough will radically change drug testing for these synthetic compounds. However, it is becoming much harder for users to evade detection. K2 and Spice are now on the list, and much more are following behind.
The Problem With Drug Testing For Synthetic Drugs Has Always Been The Rate Of Development
Drug testers can often feel as though they are one step behind many drug manufacturers because of the speed of production. The demand in the marketplace means that many different manufacturers are keen to get their slice of the pie. Makers flood shops that sell legal highs with potential best sellers.
They all have the promise of a quick fast high, and all have appealing names and packaging. It is all about providing choice to the consumer. However, the choice is merely a luxury for users. There is always the risk that tests will discover substances and made them illegal.
By changing the formula, and the names, many makers can avoid detection, and the products remain legal. Add a few “not for human consumption” warnings to the pack, and they are home and dry. It is difficult for drug testers and law enforcement officials to stay on top of this product.
Just as they celebrate a victory in banning one substance, even more, can flood in. This is what happened with K2 and Spice. Links were soon made to deaths, investigated and made illegal. Instead of dealing with the problem, it encouraged copycats. All manufacturers needed to do was change the chemical signature, and the drug would evade detection.
This Ability To Evade Detection Is Why These Substances Continue To Remain Popular With Young Workers
There are several reasons for the demand of synthetic drugs. Some are easily attracted to them for their low cost compared to illegal alternatives. Some believe they are buying into a “better,” stronger form of weed, despite there being few similarities to marijuana. Others buy due to accessibility in head shops and other stores.
For others, it is the fact that they believe they can smoke this synthetic form of marijuana and not get caught. The general notion among users is that all legal highs won’t show up in testing, that is why they are still legal. They can take K2, bath salts or any new product and pass workplace drug testing with ease.
The Excellent News For Employers Is That There Are Developments In Drug Testing For Synthetic Drugs That Are Turning The Tide
Drug tests vary greatly between labs and companies. They all depend on the method of gaining the sample and the breadth of the drug panel used. These drug panels pick up on indicators and chemicals within the sample that match up to know drugs.
The more basic options will look at a few of the more common recreational drugs. Marijuana and Cocaine are among those. At one point, it was enough for companies to test for these basic panels. Now there are these growing calls for synthetic drug detection; major testing companies have increased their range.
It is now possible for any of the more reliable companies to detect known strains of synthetic marijuana and bath salts. This is vital for employers that suspect their employees of taking these drugs, but cannot prove it.
Many Leading Companies Are Continually Adding New Compounds To Their List As They Discover Them
This means that they are working hard to keep up with the ever-increasing number of drugs in the marketplace. The more they add, the harder it will be for users to pass the tests. This means constant monitoring of the list of substances, research into chemicals and drug patterns and a willingness to adapt.
The more that companies adjust their options and try new ideas, the better the chance of making improvements. This is why there is no clear breakthrough in synthetic drug tests to get excited about. It is not one major discovery, but rather a serious of ongoing improvements in research and development.
It Is Important For Employers To Find A Reliable, Ambitious Company That Understands The Problems Of Synthetic Drugs
There is still a clear problem for drugs testers. They will always remain that one step behind as they work to include as many chemical signatures as possible. They can work to add each new chemical to the test, ensuring that new product doesn’t slip through the net. The frequency of new options and the import market from China make it difficult to keep up.
Despite this, there are those that are serious about providing the best service to clients and businesses. These are the labs continually updating their testing options for workplace drug testing and keeping on top of new developments.
Whatever users of synthetic drugs may think, one thing is clear. These advances in synthetic drug testing are closing the gap between legal substances and illegal use in the workforce. It is no longer as easy as they suspect to get away with taking these drugs before a test. Eventually, these drug panels will become so sophisticated that no legal highs will get through.Tags: Drug Testing, Synthetic Drugs