Testing a person’s hair, blood, or fingernails for drug and alcohol consumption has been a common way to accurately establish substance abuse.
The results are able to be used in life changing scenarios, such as child custody cases, workplace screening, or reissuing a person’s driving license. Therefore, not only is it important for these tests to accurately show alcohol abuse, but it can be crucial for a person to be able to also prove their abstinence.
Which alcohol tests can prove abstinence?
- Hair alcohol testing – Head or pubic hair is recommended for showing abstinence, rather than chest or arm hair. Testing EtG (Ethyl Glucuronide) in hair covers 3 months of abstinence.
- Blood alcohol testing – Testing for PEth in blood covers 1 week of abstinence.
A hair or blood test should never be done in isolation, both tests should be taken to ensure the most accurate result.
Who might need to prove abstinence?
An individual can be tested to prove that they haven’t consumed alcohol over a specified period of time. You may be required to abstain from alcohol or lower your intake for several reasons, such as:
- Pre-employment screening
- Child custody cases
- Workplace testing programme
- On probation for alcohol-related crimes
What factors can affect an alcohol test?
Due to urine containing a high concentration of ethanol, testing pubic hair can cause false positive results, and this should be taken into consideration when reviewing the results by the expert reviewer.
False negative results can be caused by hair sprays, gels, shampoos, and conditioners that contain ethyl alcohol. You can use our Hair Product Alcohol Checker to find out if your products may affect the results.
Any products and chemical treatments that are used on head hair should be declared as some hair shampoos and dyes can affect the results of an alcohol test.
DNA Legal and Alcohol Testing
DNA Legal provide blood, hair, and fingernail testing for alcohol. All our tests are ISO accredited and approved for use in UK courts. We do not perform tests in isolation, hair and fingernail testing are always combined with blood testing. By combining two methods of testing, we are minimising the change of a false positive or negative result. Find out more information about our alcohol testing services and request a quote.