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What Is Oral Fluid Toxicology?

Nov 17, 2020

Oral fluid toxicology is a type of drug test used by employers, physicians, and law enforcement personnel everywhere. It’s fast, non-invasive, and delivers immediate results that are difficult for subjects to manipulate. Here, the experts TOPLAB®, an advanced laboratory based in New Jersey that offers drug testing nationwide, explain what oral fluid toxicology is, how it works, and who can benefit.

What Is Oral Fluid Toxicology?

Saliva is excreted from glands in the mouth, which are surrounded by dense webs of capillaries, or tiny blood vessels. As a result, some blood components can diffuse from the blood into the saliva, including enzymes, electrolytes, and proteins. After drinking alcohol or using a drug, however, particles from that substance can diffuse into the saliva

 as well. Studies show that traces of substances appear in the saliva immediately after use and stay there for up to 48 hours. Therefore, oral fluid toxicology is an effective way to examine an individual’s saliva for trace amounts of alcohol or drug compounds.

The biggest advantage of oral testing is its simplicity. It’s quick, easy to do, and doesn’t require privacy. That makes them some of the toughest tests to tamper with. They offer no opportunity for subjects to substitute their sample or otherwise cheat.

Who Can Use Oral Fluid Toxicology?

With a drug test as fast and effective as oral fluid toxicology, the possibilities are endless. These tests are valuable in a range of settings, from workplaces to physician practices and rehabilitation facilities. Here are just a few types of clients who can benefit from oral toxicology:

  • Police officers testing drivers for impairment
  • Employers trying to maintain a safe, drug-free workplace
  • HR representatives vetting a potential new hire
  • Rehab specialists monitoring their residents’ recovery
  • Physicians avoiding dangerous drug interactions

Drug compounds appear in the saliva immediately after they’re metabolized, remaining there for up to two days. That makes testing most effective soon after you think the drug was used. If you’re looking for immediate results for use within the last two days, oral tests are the best option for you.

How Does It Work?

Oral drug tests are easy to administer and don’t require a phlebotomist – simply give the kit to the individual to be tested. Then, supervise them as they collect a sample of saliva with a swab and place it in a sterile container. You will then label the container with basic identifying information before sending it to TOPLAB®. Our team will evaluate the sample promptly, and you’ll receive results that tell you whether the subject has been using drugs or alcohol.

Our multi-panel oral drug tests can simultaneously indicate the presence of multiple substances, making it an efficient method of testing individuals for a wide range of commonly abused substances. Some of the most common we test for include:

  • Alcohol
  • Amphetamines and methamphetamines
  • Barbiturates
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Cocaine
  • Marijuana and synthetic alternatives
  • Opiates and other narcotics
  • Psychedelics

Learn More with TOPLAB®

Oral drug tests are some of the easiest, most accurate drug testing avenues on the market, and TOPLAB® is proud to offer reliable oral fluid toxicology services to clients throughout the United States. We’re a full-service testing laboratory based in New Jersey, serving workplaces, healthcare providers, and more. If you’re interested in learning more about how this testing type can benefit you, contact us today.