Hair Follicle Drug Test for Alcohol: Employers & HR Guide

Hair Follicle Drug Test for Alcohol: Employers & HR Guide


In today's fast-paced corporate environment, the well-being of employees is paramount. With the increasing concerns about substance abuse affecting workplace safety and productivity, employers are turning to more advanced testing methods. One such method gaining traction is the hair follicle drug test for alcohol. 

This in-depth guide aims to provide a detailed understanding of this test, its advantages, and its implications for the modern workplace.

Table of Contents

The Science Behind Hair Follicle Testing

What is Hair Follicle Testing?

Imagine hair follicle testing as the body's timeline, recording our tales of indulgence. Every time we drink or pop a pill, our hair silently takes notes. It's not just jotting down recent events but capturing a history that spans months. 

As our hair grows, it's scribbling down our choices, holding onto secrets of what's been ingested. And it's not just about catching someone out; it's more about understanding patterns and habits. 

The beauty of the hair drug test is its longevity. While blood tests might catch a glimpse of our recent past, hair tells a more extended story. It is a narrative woven in each strand, revealing a detailed account of substance use. For anyone trying to piece together the puzzle of a person's habits, an EtG hair test is like having a backstage pass to the show of their life.

Why EtG? Here is why!

When you drink alcohol, your body starts breaking it down. During this process, it generates specific byproducts. EtG (Ethyl Glucuronide) is the most reliable marker for alcohol consumption. 

While FAEE (Fatty Acid Ethyl Esters) is another byproduct, testers often prioritize EtG because it provides a more consistent and unambiguous indication of alcohol intake. As your hair grows, EtG markers get embedded within the strands. 

By analyzing these markers in hair samples, testers can determine not only if someone consumed alcohol but also get insights into the frequency and patterns of their consumption. This makes EtG-based hair follicle testing an invaluable tool for understanding an individual's relationship with alcohol over extended periods.

Why is Hair Follicle Testing The Gold Standard for Employers?

  • Extended Detection Window: Unlike urine or blood tests, hair tests can trace back alcohol consumption for up to 90 days. This broader window provides a more comprehensive view of an employee's substance use patterns.
  • Tamper-Resistant: Attempting to tamper with hair samples is challenging and easily detectable, ensuring the integrity of the test results.
  • Precision and Accuracy: Thanks to the EtG and FAEE markers, hair follicle tests offer unparalleled accuracy, minimizing the chances of false positives.
  • Comprehensive Substance Detection: Hair follicle tests can identify a wide range of drugs and substances, including those that may not be easily detectable in urine or blood samples.
  • Minimal Invasiveness: Unlike blood tests, which require a needle prick, hair follicle tests are less invasive, causing minimal discomfort to the person being tested.
  • Cost-Efficient in the Long Run: While the initial cost might be higher than urine tests, the extended detection window and reduced chance of re-testing due to tampering make it cost-effective in the long run.
  • Environmental Factors May Not Affect Results: External factors such as shampoo, bleach, or other hair treatments won't significantly impact the test results.
  • Storage and Handling: Hair samples are more stable than urine or blood, meaning they don't degrade as quickly and can be stored and retested if necessary.
  • Reflects Long-Term Usage: Rather than just indicating recent drug use, hair follicle tests can provide insights into an individual's history of substance use, allowing employers to make informed decisions.
  • Supports a Safer Workplace: By effectively detecting substance abuse, hair follicle tests promote a safer work environment, minimizing risks associated with impaired judgment or performance due to substance use.

Implementing Hair Follicle Testing in the Workplace (Exclusive for HR)

  • Legal Considerations: Before implementing any testing, it is crucial to be aware of federal and state regulations. Regular consultations with legal teams can ensure that the testing process respects employee rights.
  • Employee Awareness: It's essential to ensure that employees understand the reasons behind the testing and the process itself. Open communication channels can alleviate concerns and misconceptions.
  • Addressing Positive Results: A clear protocol should be in place for addressing positive results, focusing on employee well-being and support.
  • Training and Certification: Ensure those administering the tests are adequately trained and certified. This guarantees the accuracy and integrity of the testing process, reducing potential errors.
  • Confidentiality Measures: Establish strict confidentiality protocols to protect employee privacy. All results should be handled discreetly to prevent unnecessary disclosure or potential discrimination.
  • Incorporate into Company Policy: For smooth implementation, it's essential to include hair follicle testing guidelines in the company's official policy or employee handbook. This provides transparency and sets clear expectations.
  • Provide Resources for Support: Besides addressing positive results, companies should offer resources or programs for employees who may need help or counseling regarding substance use.

Trusted Resources and Where to Begin

For those seeking deeper insights, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is an invaluable resource. 

When you're ready to implement testing, consider starting with the EtG hair drug test at US Health Testing. US Health Testing has more than 2500+ labs nationwide so that you can book your EtG hair follicle drug test for alcohol at your nearest location (5 to 50 miles) for your employees. They are offering a 10% offer for those employers who avail EtG Hair Testing services.

For immediate testing needs, offers convenient and comprehensive kits that you can test yourself at home.

Final Words

The modern corporate landscape demands innovative solutions for age-old challenges. Hair follicle drug testing for alcohol provides a reliable, accurate, and tamper-proof method for employers to ensure workplace safety and productivity. 

As the corporate world evolves, so do the tools at its disposal. Undoubtedly, the Hair follicle drug test for alcohol represents the future of workplace alcohol testing, marrying scientific rigor with practical applications.

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