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Drug abuse marijuana, cocaine, opiates, methamphetamine

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When marijuana is smoked, THC, its active ingredient, is absorbed by most tissues and organs in the body; however, it is primarily found in fat tissues. The body, in its attempt to rid itself of the foreign chemical, chemically transforms the THC into metabolites. Urine tests can detect THC metabolites for up to a week after people have smoked marijuana (light/ casual use, a small amount, once per month in an average, young healthy & fit person, may result in a positive result for a day or two. Heavy use (smoking more than 3 times per week) could present a positive drug test result for a month. It is important to note that there are many factors that affect the amount of time for a negative drug test result to be presented so the above information should be taken only as a very rough approximation


Cocaine is a powerful, stimulant drug drawn from the leaves of the South American coca bush. Cocaine is sold as a fine white powder that can be sniffed or injected. Its street names include coke, C, snow, nose candy, flake, blow. Crack is cocaine that has been processed with baking soda and water into a form that can be smoked. Crake is also known as rock, apple jacks, glow, cloud and dip. Cocaine triggers the release of dopamine, a chemical associated with pleasure in the brain. Cocaine can be detected in urine for up to approximately four days following use (depending upon the amount consumed, strength of the drug, route of administration, frequency of prior use and metabolic rate of the individual).

Opiates, sometimes referred to as narcotics, are a group of drugs which are used medically to relieve pain, but also have a high potential for abuse. Some opiates come from a resin taken from the seed pod of the Asian poppy. This group of drugs includes opium, morphine, heroin, and codeine. Other opiates, such as meperidine (Demerol), are synthesized or manufactured. Opium appears as dark brown chunks or as a powder and is usually smoked or eaten. Generally opiates can be detected in urine (at the Australian Standard Cut-off Level) for between 1 and 2 days, and up to one week for methadone. This can of course vary markedly depending upon physiological and consumption factors.

Methamphetamine (ice, crystal, speed, glass, shards, crank) is a stimulant drug that is chemically related to amphetamine but with stronger effects on the central nervous system. It is made in illegal laboratories and can be taken orally, snorted, injected, or smoked. Methamphetamine stimulates the release of high levels of dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is a chemical associated with pleasure and reward and also essential for movement. Over time, methamphetamine appears to cause reduced levels of dopamine which can lead to a chemical change in how the brain works. Methamphetamines can be detected in urine for up to approximately two days following use (depending upon the amount consumed, strength of the drug, route of administration, frequency of prior use and metabolic rate of the individual).

Benzodiazepines are medications that are frequently prescribed for the symptomatic treatment of anxiety and sleep disorders. Benzodiazepines are also used as sedatives before some surgical and medical procedures, and for the treatment of seizure disorders and alcohol withdrawal. However they can be highly addictive for some people in addition to being abused. Someone who has taken speed might also take benzodiazepines to bring themselves “down” when they need sleep. The period of time that Benzodiazepines can be detected varies from individual to individual and depends on many factors such as the amount of drug taken, frequency, route of administration, and type of drug itself. Generally a positive result can be detected in a urine sample for between one to 12 days.

Urine testing for drugs has never been scientifically shown to be safe or effective at improving workplace safety or productivity, and studies indicate that the great majority of drug-positive workers are just as reliable as others. Medically, the consensus of expert opinion is that drug tests are an inherently unreliable indicator of drug impairment. Dr. George Lundberg of the American Medical Association has called them "Chemical McCarthyism".

A metabolite is a substance created when a drug is taken - cocaine, will produce a metabolite called benzoylecgonine. Detecting both the parent drug and its metabolites helps improve the interpretation of the test result.

If you're in doubt please few simple questions: Am I drug addict? or Do I have drinking problem?"


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