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How Does a Saliva Drug Test Work?

There are a myriad of reasons and situations in which it is appropriate to utilize a drug test. The use of alcohol and drugs can create safety and health hazards that not only impact the substance user, but those around them. In the context of employment, drug tests are used to screen candidates and avoid hiring individuals at risk for poor productivity or morale. 

Common types of drug tests include blood, urine, hair, and saliva tests. Each of these tests varies in what substances are detected and for how long. Saliva tests are the most popular version chosen by employers. It should be noted that employers are legally obligated to disclose to current or potential employees that they will need to consent to drug testing and explain why. Take a look at a brief explanation of how does a saliva drug test work. 

What is a Saliva Drug Test? 

A saliva drug test, also known as an oral fluids test, uses saliva swabbed from the inside of a person’s mouth to test for various drugs. Saliva tests can detect illegal drugs used within several days, and can test for alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, and methamphetamines. Compared to other drug test, saliva tests are less expensive, easier to conduct, simple, and minimally invasive. Since saliva is easy to collect and test, the test itself can be done on-site, saving time and effort. 

A saliva drug test is best for determining how imparied someone is in the immediate moment and is most helpful for detecting recent drug use. Oral Cube saliva test provides easy to read, on-site results within minutes. With Best For Less Drug Test, anyone can purchase brand name, FDA approved drug tests online and receive guaranteed results. Using the Oral Cube saliva test means no mess, difficult to adulterate samples, and non-invasive sample collection. 

Employers within certain industries are legally required to drug screen job applicants either before or during the hiring process for illegal drug use. Sometimes employers will test employees prior to giving a promotion, and others may choose to conduct random drug tests at any time. 

Additionally, an employer can ask for a drug test if there is suspicion that an employee is under the influence of drugs and their work performance is suffering. Also in the case of an on-site injury or accident, an employer can seek an oral drug test to determine liability. Remember, employees must always consent to submit to a drug test. An individual is within their legal rights in an employment situation to refuse a drug test. 

What Does it Test For? 

Different drug tests can detect certain illegal drugs and substances. Most saliva tests can detect alcohol for 1 to 5 days, marijuana for 24 to 72 hours, cocaine for up to 10 days, amphetamines for 1 to 5 days, and methamphetamines for 1 to 4 days. There are several factors that can impact drug testing timelines, for example: age, weight, body fat, height, physiological makeup, and frequency and length of drug use. In some instances, saliva tests can show positive results immediately after drug use. 

Drug tests are not just looking for the presence of drugs in a person’s system. When drugs are ingested, the body chemically alters the substances and metabolizes them into metabolites. People who administer drug tests are looking for the presence of metabolites, which indicate that drugs have been present in the body. These parent compounds are the psychoactive element of a drug. When drugs are detected in a saliva test, this proves that drugs have in fact entered the bloodstream. Positive results show higher levels of the parent compound indicating higher levels of drugs in the body. 

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