Legal weed doesn’t necessarily guarantee an unfettered cannabis experience. Employees are still regularly subjected to mouth swab drug test screenings. And police in recreational-use states are trying to figure out how to deal with an alleged increase in drivers under the influence of cannabis. In short, with more people smoking weed, more people are interested in testing for it, especially on the job and behind the wheel. And unlike blood or urine tests, mouth swab drug tests are cheap and fast, which means knowing how to pass a mouth swab drug test is more important than ever.
Overview: Who’s Afraid of a Mouth Swab Drug Test?
This guide is for anyone who’s facing or could face a mouth swab drug test or saliva drug test for weed. We go beyond the basics, offering practical advice for passing your mouth swab drug test alongside information about what the test looks for, when you’re most at risk, and how to be prepared with little or no warning.
What Do Mouth Swab Drug Tests Look For?
It’s important to understand what separates saliva swab tests from the standard piss-in-a-cup approach to screening for weed in your system.
For starters, saliva drug tests and urine tests screen for entirely different compounds. Urinalysis screens for THC-COOH, which is a metabolite the body produces as it metabolizes delta-9 THC, the compound that’s psychoactive and gets you stoned when you inhale it or eat it.
Swab tests, on the other hand, are looking for activated THC, that is, delta-9 THC. In other words, exactly what you’d have all over the inside of your mouth after inhaling a giant rip off your bong.
And that’s the good news and the bad news about mouth swab tests for weed. They can’t detect cannabis metabolites that may be lingering in your system. But they can detect the psychoactive, and therefore illicit, THC that gets caught in your spit.
What Is The Range Of Risk For Failing A Mouth Swab Drug Test?
And this brings us to our next point: when are you, cannabis smoker/eater that you are, at risk of failing a saliva drug test?
In technical terms, you’re at risk for as long as the concentration of THC in your saliva is above the lower threshold the test is able to detect. Experts call this the “confirmation cutoff.”
This cutoff varies depending on who makes the test, and manufacturers are always trying to dial in the ideal level. Additionally, different states have different legal limits for cannabis intoxication, so tests have to fit the law.
Sparing you the details about micrograms per liter, etc. etc., what this all means in practical terms is simple.
You’re probably in the clear after just one or two days’ abstention from weed. Giving yourself a week would be playing it really safe.
Simply put: the range of risk for failing a mouth swab drug test is relatively short.
Why Doesn’t THC Stay In Saliva For Very Long?
THC just doesn’t stay in your saliva for very long. And of course there are steps, which we’ll cover below, you can take to speed up the process.
Thankfully, any THC metabolites which might make their way through your saliva glands on their way out of your system aren’t going to show up on the swab test. It just isn’t looking for those chemicals.
Ultimately, there’s nothing keeping delta-9 THC in your saliva, except the fact that after you smoke weed it coats the entire surface of your mouth. That’s why it only sticks around for a day or two. A week, maybe, if you never brush your teeth or something.
Knowing How To Pass A Mouth Swab Drug Test
Knowing what a swab test is looking for and how long you’re at risk is crucial information for passing your screening. If you suspect a saliva drug test is in your future, just hold off smoking for a few days prior.
Eating edibles can reduce your risk of detection, but of course, it’s not as surefire as abstaining altogether. In fact, researchers are hard at work trying to develop tests that have a range low enough to detect for recent edibles consumption.
Sometimes, however, you don’t have the luxury of an advanced warning. Without a heads up, like a surprise test at work or a police checkpoint can leave you vulnerable to mouth swab detection, especially if you’ve smoked recently.
In this case, there are two reliable ways to pass the swab test.
How To Pass A Mouth Swab Drug Test With A Few Hours To Spare
Let’s start with the best-case scenario. You’re going to get a test at work, but you have a few hours before you get swabbed. Start drinking lots of fluids and double check marijuana detection times for your usage. Vigorously swish water around your mouth. Rinse and repeat!
And get yourself a helping of the fattiest food you can find. Remember, THC bonds to fat, so eating fatty foods could help pull lingering THC out of your mouth.
How To Pass A Mouth Swab Drug Test With Little To No Warning
Now for the worst-case. You’re pulled over and have no time to spare. No sweat: after reading this guide, you’ll be prepared. Time to commit some adulteration… of your saliva!
Adulterants are chemicals that interfere with drug tests, and new and improved ones come out all the time. It’s a dance: a new adulterant works, it beats the test. But then a new test figures out how to detect the adulterant’s traces.
For mouth swab drug tests, hydrogen peroxide is the adulterant of choice.
And one company had the ingenious idea of putting little packets of it inside chewing gum. Just pop in a piece of gum, break open the packet and swish.
There are mouthwashes out there that do the same thing, but using one of those in your car might be a little less discrete.
Keep in mind adulterating your saliva will only keep you clean for a half hour, tops. But since this is a last-minute solution, hopefully, that’s all you need.
Final Words On How To Pass A Mouth Swab Drug Test
Hopefully, you can breathe a little easier knowing that mouth swab drug tests for weed are definitely the easiest tests to pass. The Delta-9 THC swab tests are looking for doesn’t hang around in your saliva very long. And in a pinch, you can neutralize your saliva. In fact, these tests are so unreliable, you might even pass a swab test a few hours after you smoke. Good luck!
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