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Thomas Carroll Blauvelt

Could mouthwash lead to a DUI arrest?

You often hear people who are arrested on DUI charges say that they are actually innocent and they weren’t drinking. Even those who claim they did have a few drinks may say they should have still been well below the legal limit in terms of blood alcohol concentration. They may say that something else influenced that test and gave them a higher reading.

One thing that is blamed in some situations is mouthwash. If you use mouthwash before you get in the car, could being pulled over by the police put you at a higher risk for a DUI that you don’t deserve?

Mouthwash does contain alcohol

It is theoretically possible that mouthwash could lead to a DUI because many types of mouthwash do contain alcohol. It is put into the solution for cleaning purposes, but some of it may still be in your mouth when you take the breath test. The mouthwash isn’t going to change your blood alcohol concentration since you don’t swallow it, but even a small amount in your mouth could appear as a very high reading on a breath test. This could last for a short time after you use the mouthwash.

One thing to keep in mind is that people will sometimes try to use mouthwash to get out of a drunk driving charge. They believe the officer is going to smell alcohol on their breath and so they’ll quickly use the mouthwash to hide it. But doing this could actually increase your odds of getting a DUI because the mouthwash itself may trigger it.

No matter how you found yourself facing serious DUI charges, be sure you understand your legal defense options