Mouth swab drug testing is becoming more popular amongst employers, which is why if you are a regular smoker it’s vital you learn how to pass an oral drug test.
There is only one reason for an oral drug test, and that is to test for the recent use of THC. I’m sure many of us have been there before; we want to enjoy our weed, but we have a fear of undergoing a marijuana screening and are therefore left to wondering how to flush your system for a drug test – and how to do it fast.
Just because weed is now legal under state law in many states throughout America, it by no means brings about the sudden elimination of drug tests, as many employees are still regularly subjected to drug tests of various kinds.
Essentially, consuming weed on the job is the same thing as drinking on the job — in short, it’s not allowed, even if you live in a “cannabis friendly” state like Colorado or California.
When Do Employers Use Mouth Swab Drug Tests?
There are various times that employers might decide to conduct a mouth swab test. Typically speaking, these will be pre-employment, background test, post-incident, and random drug testing.
Let’s take a look at each:
Pre-employment – As part of their corporate policy, some employers may screen potential employees or even applicants before they employ them. This is a time when people are at their most vulnerable because they are not employed by the company and have fewer employment rights, aren’t covered by grievance or appeals processes, and don’t have the support of a union. This means that it is the perfect opportunity to make them undergo a drug test.
Background test – They may conduct an oral drug test as part of a larger employment screening process, along with several other background tests. They might also conduct these tests before an employee is offered a promotion.
Random test – This process involves selecting several employees at random and at regular intervals to test them for the use of drugs. There usually won’t be much prior notice of a random drug test, and employees will only find out at the last minute that they will be undergoing a test. But, generally, the employer does have to notify the employees that random drug tests are possible. In some states, there are laws in place as to how long in advance employees should be notified about a drug test.
Post-incident – This is when a drug test is administered after an incident that causes injury, damages, or a near-miss has occurred. It may be done automatically after an incident has taken place but in some cases, it’s only done if a supervisor suspects that drugs may have played a part in the incident. This will help the employer to determine who is liable for the incident.
Under no circumstances can any employer force an employee or job candidate to undergo a saliva test. However, if you refuse, the consequences could be detrimental to your job. Just as an employee or applicant can refuse to undergo a drug test, the employer may then revoke a job offer, or fire or suspend a current employee as a result.
So how do mouth swabs differ from other types of drug testing, and how can you pass one easily? Here, we’ll discuss the science of mouth swabs, what they test for, how long THC stays in your saliva, and how you can accelerate the process of clearing it out to pass a drug screen.
What Is a Mouth Swab Drug Test?
Also known as an oral fluid test or saliva test, a mouth swab drug test, as the name suggests, collects saliva from inside the mouth. The saliva is used to test for the use of drugs, which can typically be detected within a few days of use.
Saliva screenings are a relatively new form of drug testing, but they have increased in popularity over the years. There are several reasons why employers and authorities are turning to this form of an oral drug test, some of which include the fact that it is:
- Non-inclusive (fewer issues with privacy)
- Easy to administer randomly on-site
- Convenient (no nurses or technicians needed)
- Results can be determined instantly (and are cheaper than the more common urine test)
- Harder to tamper with
If you’ve got a drug test to pass, this is the one that you should be hoping for. This is considered to be one of the easier tests to pass once you know how to do it, and it’s basically the only type of test where a weed smoker has an easier time passing than, say, a meth, ecstasy, cocaine, or opiate user.
Some drugs will stay in the system longer than others, and mouth swab tests are typically used to test for the presence of alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamines, and amphetamines. It’s also important to understand that saliva tests and other forms of drug testing, such as urine tests, screen for entirely different compounds.
Urine tests screen for THC-COOH (a metabolite the body produces when it breaks down THC), whereas saliva tests screen for only the “active” version of THC. In other words, exactly what would be in your mouth after smoking weed.
This is both good news and bad news when it comes to mouth swab tests for weed; they are unable to detect cannabis metabolites that are possibly lingering in your system, but they can detect the illicit psychoactive THC that gets caught in your spit.
Even when it comes to heavy smokers, there is quite a low risk of testing positive for THC during an oral swab, as long as they abstain from smoking for just 24 hours (those people on the other hand that are wondering how to pass a urine drug test naturally, much more time than this is typically needed).
This is good news for regular smokers and in fact, anyone who consumes weed.
Not only can you pass an oral drug test by having a bit of knowledge about how long it takes for drugs to no longer be detectable in saliva, but you can also do some other completely legal things to help minimize your chances of failure:
- Eat a fat based meal an hour before your drugs test. In theory the fat will help to absorb metabolites (THC for cannabis) from your bloodstream and expel them more quickly.
- Speed up the rate at which toxins are being expelled by upping your fluid intake.
- Make sure you drink lots of fluids
- Using chewing gum, mouthwash or altoid mints can cleanse the saliva.
- If taking a swab under the supervision of a lab technician, try to ignore the instructions given or manipulate them to your advantage.
- Brush your teeth three or four times a day. Brush your teeth and using mouthwashes can massively increase your chances of getting rid of toxins.
Passing A Mouth Swab Drug Test With A Few Hours Notice
As far as surprise drug screens go, the best-case scenario is that you’re going to be tested, say, at work, but you have a few hours before the swab. First, start drinking lots of fluids. Vigorously swish water around in your mouth, and use an non-alcoholic mouthwash if you have some on hand. If you can brush your teeth, absolutely do, and be thorough!
It’s also a very good idea to get a helping or two of some fatty food. Remember, THC is lipid-soluble, meaning it bonds to fat, so eating something with a high fat content can help remove lingering THC from your mouth quickly and effectively.
Passing a Mouth Swab Drug Test With Little to No Notice
In the worst-case scenario, you get pulled over and don’t have a moment to spare. Don’t freak out just yet: you’ll be prepared after reading this guide. It’s time for some adulteration!
You might have heard of the adulteration method if you’ve been researching how to pass a drug test: adulterants are chemicals that interfere with a drug test’s ability to read the sample, and there are new and improved ones coming out constantly. This is because there’s an arms race of sorts between drug testing companies and the people trying to beat them: an adulterant works and beats the test, only for a new test to come out that can detect the adulterant’s presence, and the process starts all over again.
For mouth swabs, the general adulterant of choice is hydrogen peroxide. You can swish some vigorously around in your mouth quickly and adulterate your saliva enough to fool the test. This trick only works for a short period of time, so you have to use it just minutes before you’re swabbed. For this reason, it’s not ideal, but it does work in a pinch.
We recommend keeping a bottle of Toxin Rid Rescue Wash Mouthwash in the glove box for such instances, as it works quickly and reliably, and certainly tastes better than hydrogen peroxide. Swish with one third of the bottle at a time, spitting between, and pop in a couple of breath mints for good measure.