How to Pass a Saliva Drug Test with Listerine

You must have heard that Listerine helps in passing saliva (mouth swab) drug test. You must also be wondering, ‘‘Man, will this really work?’’

I have to admit that this method seems a little bit farfetched and more of another internet rumor. Take it easy though. It’s true that Listerine works most of the time. But studies show that water also works.

In this article, I’ll show you how to use Listerine to pass a drug test. I’ll also explain how and why it works and how you could use water instead.

How Swab Drug Tests Detect Marijuana

Saliva drug tests are becoming more common not only in post-accident testing but on the job testing too. The reason for this is that they are supposedly more accurate than urinalysis.

You see, unlike a urine drug test, a swab test shows whether you’ve had a hit in the recent past or not. These tests will detect marijuana for up to 72 hours since you last had your last toke.

Therefore, it accurately informs your employer, potential employer, or whoever is taking the test whether you have used the drugs recently or not.

This can be either good news or bad news depending on your status at that specific time of the test. In one hand, it means that unlike a urine drug test that can detect THC for up to 30 days, a swab test means that you won’t be convicted of a ‘sin’ that you committed almost a month or 2 ago.

On the other hand, remember that THC is detectable in your mouth immediately after stoning and will hover around for up to 24 hours. This means that unless something is done, it’s quite difficult to cheat this test especially if you’ve held a hit within the last 24 hours.

The other thing that makes a saliva test bad news for you is that it can be administered anywhere (by the roadside or at the job site) at any time with or without warning.

What does a Swab Drug Test Look for?

If you’ve read our other articles on urinalysis, you must know that urine tests check for THC-COOH also known as 11-COOH-THC. This is a metabolite that is formed after THC has been metabolized and it’s detectable in urine and feces.

A saliva drug test is quite different though. This test looks for activated THC (delta-9 THC). This is the psychoactive compound that gives you the HIGH effect when you inhale or eat marijuana.

A puff of marijuana harbors millions of activated THC molecules. A good portion of these molecules remains in your salivary albumin concentration mostly in your oral cavity and this is what gets you in trouble.

How long is THC detectable in the saliva?

As with any other test, your chances of fooling a swab drug test highly depends on how long the THC in your mouth remains within the detectable levels.

A study published in the Journal of Analytical Toxicology aimed at investigating how long THC stays in the mouth in the controlled administration of smoked marijuana.

In this study, 6 subjects were required to smoke cannabis cigarette containing 1.75% THC in the first week and another one containing 3.55% THC in the following week. Saliva specimens in each experiment were analyzed for the concentration of THC by GC-MS (Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry).

12 minutes after initiation of smoking, one specimen recorded a THC concentration of 5800 ng/ml. At around the 20th minute, this concentration had subsided to 81 ng/ml. 12 hours after the test, another test showed that the concentration of THC in the saliva specimens had fallen to below 1 ng/ml.

The researchers noted that this pattern of initial high levels of THC concentration right after smoking followed by a decline was recorded in all the subjects.

They also stated that the decline in the concentration levels with time suggests that there might be a direct absorption of THC into the bloodstream directly from the mouth.

As we can deduce from the study above, THC stays in your mouth for up to 12 hours after a puff. The good news, however, is that the concentration declines with time.

Most labs use a cut-off level of 10-25 ng/ml depending on the type of test. While the study above shows that THC will be way below the detectable levels 12 hours after the last puff, it’s worth noting that there are tests that can detect cannabis 48 hours after an encounter.

In addition, remember that the THC molecules may linger around for a little longer depending on a few factors including;

  • The amount of pot you had last
  • How long you’ve been smoking
  • Your age, health condition, and the value of salivary albumin in your mouth- albumin is a ubiquitous protein found in human blood and saliva as well. THC is highly bound to this protein. A study in the journal of National Institutes of Health shows that the values of albumin in the mouth are high with the elderly. While no research has been done around this topic so far, it’s safe to assume that this group will tend to have a higher concentration of cannabis in their mouth after a toke followed by a lower decline rate.

Can you pass a saliva drug test with Listerine?

Yes. Most people continue to pass swab tests using Listerine strips today and lots of scientific studies prove that it really works. They also brush the mouth with Listerine or even swallow it,

Perhaps the saving grace in this method is that the components of Listerine do not show on the tests, at least for now. Thus, it’s not easy for the lab guys to detect that you are trying to cheat the test.

The internet community has several methods of using the Listerine method of passing saliva tests. Here is the most common regimen;

What you’ll need

  • Listerine mouthwash
  • Listerine Breath Strips
  • Time
  • Water

How to use Listerine to Pass a Saliva test

Step 1: Abstain from Cannabis and other drugs for at least 48 hours

As I have just told you, some saliva tests today will detect cannabis 48 hours since your last hit. That being said, it’s a brilliant idea to keep off the weed for at least 2 days or even 3 if you seriously want to pass that test.

Of course, you might not have 48 hours if you’ve just been informed of a possible saliva test on the same day.

That might be a tough situation to be in. But we’ve heard of guys who beat the test 9 am in the morning even after stoning late into the night the previous day. If you are in this situation, you’ll want to take the next steps in this method even more faithfully.

Step 2: Eat and Drink to keep your mouth moist

Beating a saliva test is all about getting rid of the saturated saliva in the mouth. To do this you’ll need to keep the water content in your mouth moving. One sure way of doing this is to eat and drink.

You don’t really need to change anything in your morning routine especially if you have 48 hours or more to the test.

However, if you don’t want to take any chances, you might want to consider foods that make you salivate more and those with high water content. These include apples, carrots, cucumbers, celery, pasta, and cheese. Foods with spices such as cayenne pepper, cardamom, cayenne, and ginger also play a huge role.

It’s also a good idea to avoid foods that aggravate dry mouth including soda, dry crackers, salty nuts, popcorns, and sugary desserts.

Step 3: Brush your teeth, tongue, and gum

When I say brush, I mean to do it like crazy. The essence here is to remove as much THC as possible. Reliable sources advocate brushing 3-4 times each day (as usual). However, you might want to brush for a few more minutes than the 2 minutes that dentists recommend.

When brushing, you want to ensure that you give equal priority to the teeth, tongue, and the top, bottom, and sides of the mouth.

You could also use Listerine although you’ll need it the most on the ‘D-day.’

Using a dental floss might also increase your odds of passing the test since it reaches where your brush doesn’t and, therefore, aids in getting rid of more THC molecules.

Step 4: Day of the Test

On the day of the test, this is when you need to descend on the remaining molecules like never before. Here, you’ll want to extend the brushing time to up to 15 or 20 minutes.

You’ll also need to swish Listerine at least 4 times and as many times as possible before heading out. Importantly, let the mouthwash absorb for 45 seconds to 1 minute before spitting it down the plughole. Yes, Listerine stings like hell especially if allowed to sit in the mouth for long. But that’s nothing compared to what a FAIL in the drug test might make you feel.

Step 5: Heading to the venue

One hour to the test, pack a small amount of Listerine and a bottle of water. On the way, rub 2 Listerine strips into each cheek and let them dissolve. Take another pair of strips and dissolve them under your tongue. The essence of this is to absorb any molecules that may have eluded all the brushing and swishing so far.

If you don’t have Listerine strips, you could buy a pack at the local candy or drugs store near you. Each pack goes for around 2 bucks.

Step 6: 30 minutes to a collection

30 minutes before the test, swish Listerine for the last time and rinse with water. Take 2 more strips and rub the cheeks for the last time before facing the lab technician.

How Listerine works in Saliva Drug test

One common question that most of our readers throw our way is, ‘‘how does Listerine work to help beat a saliva test?’’

Well, the jury is yet to come up with a concrete explanation on what really happens here. However, there are a few suggestions that have been put forward.

The major belief is that it cleans the THC molecules just as it gets rid of bacteria in the mouth. Others believe that it uses its bacteria-killing power to destroy THC thereby making it undetectable.

Still, some are of the opinion that the active ingredients in Listerine (menthol, thymol, methyl salicylate, and eucalyptol) interfere with the test’s performance making them record a false negative.

Listerine vs. Water- what works better? Scientific Research Results

It’s evident that Listerine does help in passing a swab drug test. However, studies show that water works in a similar manner and perhaps even better.

A 2014 study aimed at assessing the effect of different mouthwashes and water on cannabis oral fluid concentrations.

This study involved 11 chronic cannabis smokers and took 4 days. On the first, second, and third day, the subjects smoked their daily doses. Oral fluids were taken 30 minutes before smoking, and at 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 1 hour, 3 hours, 6 hours, 12, hours, and 24 hours after smoking.

The participants used water, Kleaner, and whole milk and specimens were analyzed for THC concentrations.

Significantly lower concentrations of THC in the oral fluids specimens were observed after a water rinse than with Kleaner and milk.

It was also found out that 15 minutes post-smoking, the level of THC concentration was 3 folds higher than the 25 ng/ml cut-off used by Spanish police regardless of the type of mouthwash used.

Conclusion

There’s no doubt that Listerine can help you pass a saliva drug test. But what’s more amazing is that you can use water and still pass. This means that you don’t have to spend a buck to pass a saliva test if you don’t have Listerine at home.

How to Pass a Saliva Drug Test with Listerine
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  • Updated March 21, 2019
Daniel Miller
Daniel Miller
 

Hey there! I'm Daniel. My research into cannabis shows how cannabis affects health, including how cannabinoids can be used in the treatment of various diseases.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 72 comments
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Tammy wilcons - June 9, 2017

Thanks this was very helpful

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    D.A.R.E - April 5, 2018

    I have a nephew that is trying to get a job he uses and has dentures he says this wount work. My question is Dose this method work if you have dentures and meth usage?

    Reply
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John - August 29, 2017

Today I had a random oral saliva test, I took a hit from a g pen around 12 pm Yesterday. This morning I drank a decent amount of mouthwash with similar ingredients to listerine at 9 am then I brushed my teeth pretty thoroughly around 10:30 am. My test was given to me around 12 but it took a while for the swab to get some of my saliva what are the chances I will pass?

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    Nichole - August 31, 2017

    Did u pass?

    Reply
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    Zee - October 3, 2017

    Did You Pass ?

    Reply
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    Everyday we Lit - October 5, 2017

    I guess you in jail….did you pass or not Bra???

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    Big Mama - October 6, 2017

    John, so you really want to end it like this? Just not one wrd huh? C’mon John!

    Reply
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    Kierra - November 23, 2017

    How unfortunate and you just got out of jail? Maybe next time wait a few days before smoking. Good luck to you next time brother and thanks for the update lol

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Jason - September 10, 2017

Did you pass john?

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Sharon - September 12, 2017

I found out I have a test tomorrow, I can’t find any mouth cleansers Inot my area. I’m so scared . I used today before I found out.

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Me - September 13, 2017

Got dammit John, Did u pass?

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Anonymous - September 16, 2017

Did John pass? The world may never know

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Kdize - September 18, 2017

Still waiting John

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    Carlos - December 11, 2017

    CarlosI took my drug test today are you Listerine script are use about 20 of Scripps

    Reply
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IHadFaithInYouJohn - September 18, 2017

Fuck John We Knew You Didn’t Pass ????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

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    Anonymous - February 4, 2018

    What if john logged off and forgot his password?

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Steve - September 19, 2017

Come on corsodyl works a treat guys had a test and by God I rinsed my mouth out before work and just before the test, and had a mars bar to line my mouth, and passed flying colours, bong on now and j ready after peace out my stoner friends

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    Jos - September 20, 2017

    Like a candy bar??

    Reply
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Tasha - September 22, 2017

I smoked weed last night have a swab test at 2:30 what I use to clean my mouth out

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Anonymous - September 25, 2017

Listerine does work when i went for a swab test after i did the “talking part” of the interview i asked to use the restroom swooshed it around for a whole minute….mouth was on fucking fire…but i passed.

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    Sunny - September 27, 2017

    Thank you, I’m waiting in line now shook but just used my listerine

    Reply
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    Dee - October 5, 2017

    Hey I have a test tomorrow an I’m trying to find what I need to pass because I just smoked

    Reply
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Will Deliver - September 27, 2017

Smoking my last blunt right now. Have a swab test in the next few days. I’ll drink gallons of water, brush for 20 mins 3x a day. Right before the interview, I’ll go In with a small thing of water and another for Listerine, then do it again right before they ask to swab me.

I’ll let you know how it goes boys.

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    Anonymous - October 6, 2017

    Results??

    Reply
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SAM - September 28, 2017

Brush your teeth and on top of your tong and under the tong need to use crest tooth paste with baking soda and proxide then swiss all around your mouth with listerine cool mint mouth wash and then swiss all around with proxide if you have floss teeth sock them in proxide this works clean your mouth using these steops the night before and the day of test dont eat or drink after you do this hey it works

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John - October 14, 2017

I just got out of jail

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    Jasmine - October 16, 2017

    Dang man sorry to hear that

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Dawn - October 15, 2017

Just took a swab test yesterday which was Wednesday night. My test was Saturday. I did Apple cider vinegar in my mouth and listerine. I’m so scared. I also took one 1mg alprolazam the day before. I’m scared to death. Will I pass? I

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    YouKnowICantTellYou - November 14, 2017

    Ooh

    Reply
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YouKnowICantTellYou - November 14, 2017

I smoked about 10 tonight and 8 a.m. it’s my swab test so I roughly have 10 hours I’m going to brush my teeth tonight then brush my teeth in the morning really good and I’m going to use Listerine strips I’m just going to see how this goes I’ll keep you posted wish me luck

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    Jenny D - November 14, 2017

    Hey!! I bet u passed

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      YouKnowICantTellYou - November 15, 2017

      Yes!! I passed lol… To easy guys!!!

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        Dennis - May 21, 2018

        How did you pass what do i have to do

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Jenny D - November 14, 2017

Listerine works!! No joke passed twice just brush good or gargle that shit before u go in. Also get the pocket strips if ur that worried. My b.f smoked like a chimney the night before. Listerine bam job

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    Axelee - November 15, 2017

    I just smoked and I have a test at 8:00 am will I pass with the listerine strips ??

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YouKnowICantTellYou - November 16, 2017

Ok guys it is prooven Listerine strips do work i got the blue one i used about 7. 2 when i woke up. The rest about 30-45 minutes before test it will be intense but it kills 99.9%of everything in your mouth. But do mind i brushed my teeth 4 times top bottoms gums sides get it all. Bruch like 20 mins each time to ensure your getting it… Also where ever you put the strips in your mouth remember put the swab mostly there and i smoked 10 hours prior…so yeah this will help anyone have questions im here t

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    Mc smokey - December 17, 2017

    Okay so my wife has a swab test at 7 this morning I told her to mind her mouth with Vaseline to create a barrier no extra steps were taken let’s see if this works I will know by 7:30 a.m.

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    Angel - August 13, 2018

    Your a saint thanks I was scared I couldnt smoke today because of my test tomorrow but you saved me

    Reply
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Krista - December 18, 2017

I Last smoked a J on Friday night about 9:30pm. My swab test is tomorrow (Monday at 10am) I’ll be alittle over 48 hours clean. Bought a mouthwash I have been using habitually and will brush really good and eat a shit ton of mints before. Scared as shit!!!

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    Anonymous - December 27, 2017

    Did you pass ??? I’m in the same boat lol

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Mastoura - December 20, 2017

They’ve got coppers doing random drug tests over in Australia now, anywhere, anytime, for drivers…pooping all over the Aussie xmas festivities…does anybody know of any way of neutralising saliva just before jumping in the car, that may be effective for 3-4 hours?

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    Yep. - May 10, 2018

    Yeah, don’t drink before driving. There is a line where recreation turns into stupidity.

    Reply
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      Blake - June 15, 2018

      He said random drug tests. Not random breath tests.

      Smoking and then driving days later is very different from drinking and then driving some day.

      Reply
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Moist mouth - January 26, 2018

I do 3 random 7 panel mouth swabs weekly. I don’t use marijuana so unsure on that, however I am on pain meds. And I test negative every time. All I do is brush my teeth really well with Biotene Dry Mouth toothpaste before I go in. Hope this helps.

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    Kylie Wilson
    Kylie Wilson - January 26, 2018

    Thanks!

    Reply
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Aingelbae81 - February 1, 2018

I have a mouth swab test in a few days, I used cocaine, does anyone know if I can pass my oral swab drug test using Listerine!! ? And making sure I brush really good ?

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    Anonymous - February 2, 2018

    We only smoke weed around here…wrong page

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      Onlygodcanjudgeme - February 20, 2018

      Don’t be a hypocrite… who are you to judge anyone

      Reply
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    Melissa - March 20, 2019

    I hope u passed your test its some ignorant people..

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Nah - February 6, 2018

I have a text in the morning I’m using two different mouthwashes and mother’s vinegar plus brushing my teeth will I pass?

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Starryeyes - February 11, 2018

I hope I pass I don’t smoke all the time took my last hit Tuesday night found out next day I had to take a test as soon as I found out I started to clean my mouth out all the way up till test time it was 37 hours later I hope I passed it it was under the tongue test but I didn’t keep it there lol I played with it didn’t touch my gums or anything I even ate mints all the way up till I went in the back my mouth was numb I’ll find out soon

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Ashley - March 3, 2018

I had 36 hours clean, used Listerine 20 mins before and smoked a menthol cigarette. You guys think I will pass?

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Ashley - March 3, 2018

I had 36 hours clean, used Listerine 20 mins before and smoked a menthol cigarette as directed. You guys think I will pass?

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Jamo - April 17, 2018

I had a mouth swab with DCs and passed it right before the test I went into the bathroom and put antibacterial soap in my mouth!!!
Now last week they popped in on me again and surprised me with a mouth swab and hair follicle test. Luckily I had just got thru

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Sara - April 19, 2018

I have passed 2 saliva tests. I smoke over a gram a day, everyday. Both times I passed the test, I smoked the day before. I brush my teeth, floss with toothpaste by smearing it across my teeth(get the toothpaste between teeth), whiten my teeth with PlusWhite 5minute in two mouth guards for 5 minutes, then brush out the whitener, brush my teeth again with toothpaste, and finally Listerine. I don’t think it has to be too soon. I did this at 7:30am today for an 8:30 interview that did not test. Later, I went to a 10:30 interview where they did test and I passed. I did not eat or smoke between. SUMMARY = Brush, floss w/ toothpaste, whiten with TRAYS, brush, listerine.

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Anonymous - April 20, 2018

Had mouth swab test today use Listerine and apple cider an hour before the test night before was the last time I smoked use Listerine so much all my mouth was blue like I was chewing on AirHeads raspberry flavor I won’t be like John when I find out I’ll post the results immediately

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Ron - May 9, 2018

Ummm.. come back and post your results?

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Anonymous - May 10, 2018

If I just took adderall at 4pm and I had a test tomorrow at 3:30pm should I use mouthwash or should I cancel

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No name - May 23, 2018

So if I smoke tonight and my mouth swab is tomorrow at 1030 am and I brush floss with mouth wash will I pass?

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    Nobody - July 9, 2018

    Got a mouth swab at 2 -230 tomorrow afternoon I smoke weed daily non stop and smoked today and as we speak I hit the bong what could I use or what should I do to pass first mouth swab test for a job ever in my life??someone help does the Listerine strips work

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Nobody - July 9, 2018

Got a mouth swab at 2 -230 tomorrow afternoon I smoke weed daily non stop and smoked today and as we speak I hit the bong what could I use or what should I do to pass first mouth swab test for a job ever in my life??someone help does the Listerine strips work

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Random mouth swab - July 27, 2018

They’re doing “randoms” at my job. Which arent really randoms. theyve been doing them for about a week now. So many fuckin people tested. My job is at Amazon. Not sure if anyone is familiar with that pony show. Havent really worried much about it because im not sure when they’ll call my number. But. If i do get called up to the office for one during my shift, I’ll be bale to go to my locker and use total mouth care listerine and the strips i guess. I thought about going to a head shop and buying some mouth wash there. Suggestions? I’m starting to brush my teeth thoroughly now. I used a few minutes ago. It’s like 10am. I go into work at 6pm tonight. Thoughts?

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Pocathasmoka - August 1, 2018

I had a swab yesterday around 4 smoked last at 1:30 brushed my teeth 3 times and swished mouthwash during the whole 30 minute ride ! Plus I had mentos gum throughout the “orientation” fingers crossed to see if I passed ????

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rowan - August 15, 2018

All these idiots on here saying they`ve smoked the night before, the best way of passing a known drug saliva test is DO NOT SMOKE FOR AT LEAST 2 DAYS before the test..Smoking the night before knowing your gonna be tested is CRAZY!!!!!!!!!!!

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liz - September 7, 2018

Hi was just informed I have a interview in 8 days. Will restrain from smoking can you please offer any other advice so I can pass the swab test for weed

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    Kylie Wilson
    Kylie Wilson - September 7, 2018

    Hi Liz. 8 days is enough to pass without any extra efforts. Just avoid smoking for at least 48 hours before the test(more is better) and you will pass.

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      liz - September 7, 2018

      thank you

      Reply
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Peter - September 8, 2018

My friend is a regular user of cannabis he is due a swab test on the day of interview what is the cut off point for an industrial swab test

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Anonymous - September 22, 2018

Hint, if you have to ask random people “will I pass?” You are probably an idiot or just want comfort.
Hey just do research and get some confidence. Don’t soak the dang thing in saliva and clean your mouth but dont overdo it. Swab tests are not too accurate. Just relax. Hold it between your teeth if you can. Get it wet enough for the minimal amount only. Have a mint tucked in and swallow it right before. The actual trick is to quit freaking worrying.

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Lil ole me - October 5, 2018

I have a oral test tomorrow(fri) morning at 9am..However i havent smoked since Wed(2days).
Ive been eating and staying hydrated..brushing my mouth and teeth. Is there something else i should do?

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Brandon - November 25, 2018

I use cannabis about 4-5 days out of the week. But this week from Monday to Friday I’ve smoked about a gram or a little more if that. I have a mouth swab on Monday at 330 so I’ve been clean for about 63 hours. My last hit was Friday at 10 pm. I brush my teeth, Drink water, I also have hydrogen peroxide and Listerine mouth wash + the strips. Will I pass?

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TheseComments - May 15, 2019

This is better than FB yo. These comments got me LMAO.

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