Drug Testing

With our clients well-being at the forefront of everything we do at The Excel Center we must understand what substances they have been using in order to provide the best care.

One of the first things our clients will need to do is undertake a comprehensive drug test. With our clients well-being at the forefront of everything we do at The Excel Center we must understand what substances they have been using in order to provide the best care. The methods vary in the sampling process as well as their outcomes. Some testing methods provide a shorter or longer window into the use of substances. Generally speaking, the tests that require bodily fluids provide a shorter window into substance use than tests that require things like hair or nail clippings. The reasons for the use of different testing methods can be based on what is trying to be determined from a test. If accuracy is most important, there are tests that are more accurate than others. If a long window of substance use is the main concern, a testing method can also be chosen accordingly.

Drug Testing Methods

Hair samples

Drug testing via a hair sample can be used to support the result of other tests, such as oral fluid and urine samples, by testing the hair follicles of a given client. Hair samples are also useful on their own due to the wide range of detectable substances. Substances that were taken up to a year earlier can still be detected in a hair sample, and a historical timeline of use of this 12-month period is also detectable.

Oral fluid samples

Oral fluid samples are taken by swabbing saliva from someone’s mouth, and their results are generally very accurate. The oral fluid samples have a much shorter window than the hair sample method, usually detecting substances that have been used in the last 48 hours. This time period can be subject to minor changes based on different substances.

Urine samples

For on-site testing purposes, urine samples can be particularly practical. A negative test result means no further action is needed, but if the result is positive it may require more time in the laboratory to determine what substances were detected and in what quantities.

Nail samples

Drug testing via a nail sample can be a helpful alternative to hair sample testing. Nail samples can be taken from clients with very little hair, or who are concerned about their appearance being affected by a hair sample. This method still offers a wide window of up to 12 months of substance use, although it does not offer the same historical timeline that hair samples do.

Home sample kits

Home testing can be a good alternative for those who suffer from anxiety or who are too nervous to visit a testing facility. These are urine sample kits, which offer additional protections to ensure tampering is not possible. They are a reliable method that can be used from the comfort of your own home, and they ensure trustworthy results.


During the recovery process we continue to take regular drug tests. This is not only to specify if drugs have been used but more to serve as a tool of accountability. A client’s motivation not to use will undoubtedly be stronger if they know an upcoming drug test is approaching, and one carried out by staff members they have developed trusting, honest relationships with.

There are many therapy related methods to assist with relapse prevention, but if a relapse occurs, catching it in the early stages is extremely beneficial to the recovery process. If relapse is left untreated, clients can easily revert to negative habits, and their substance use disorder can redevelop in secret. In order to detect relapse as soon as possible, drug testing can be a safe and practical method to ensure that a client’s recovery is kept on track.

Benefits of Regular Drug Testing

If a drug test comes back positive then it allows for our staff to assist the client immediately and to put processes and services in place to care for them appropriately. The longer someone who is recovering from substance use disorder continues taking substances in secret, the more severe their problem will become. Drug testing allows for them to be held accountable to their goals and can be a driving psychological factor for staying clean. When a client sets a goal of sobriety that is known to those close to them, and they know they will have to undergo regular testing to prove that, they will be more likely to stick to their goals.

Every client who comes to The Excel Center for help has one key thing in common. Their substance abuse has rendered their life unmanageable. The only way is up. Drug testing can be a powerful tool in forcing recognition of one’s substance abuse issues, holding oneself accountable for one’s actions and in turn accepting the help offered. We understand the desperate situation a life of addiction leads to and how lonely and isolating these substance abuse issues can be. Drug testing is an important step in the direction of claiming one’s life back.

Important Resources


Can I Keep My Job and Go to Day Treatment?

Realizing that you might need treatment for your addiction is a huge step in the right direction. However, many fear their life will change when they take that first step, including potentially losing their job. This is a valid concern; however, at Excel Treatment Center, we want you to know that you have options.

How Can I Support a Loved One Struggling With Addition?

Addiction not only affects those struggling with the addiction but also affects the friends and family around them. It can be just as challenging to support them as it is to watch them in active addiction. Learning to create a loving, supportive space without enabling can be difficult, but it is crucial to develop this space to help your loved ones through their recovery.


The Importance of Family Participation During Treatment

Addiction is a disease that affects the whole family. Family members often feel the impact of addiction in a very real way, which can lead to feelings of anger, resentment, and frustration. While these emotions are natural, they can also be detrimental to one’s treatment if left unchecked.

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