Cannabis is an amazing herb that not only helps you in a recreational manner but medicinally as well. We all enjoy blunts and joints, and everything seems awe How long marijuana stays in your body depends on many different things. Learn more about these factors, marijuana drug testing and detoxing from weed. Have an upcoming drug test you’re worried about? Join us as we discover how long does weed stays in your system and the several factors that affect it.
How long does THC last in your body?
Cannabis is an amazing herb that not only helps you in a recreational manner but medicinally as well. We all enjoy blunts and joints, and everything seems awesome. until you have to go to that dreaded drug test. Then, suddenly it all looks gloomy. Drug tests are common everywhere and although cannabis is legal in many areas, the very mention of a test makes some people panic.
If you want to enjoy cannabis without a worry in the world, you’ll naturally want to know “how long does THC last in your body?” It’s a question asked by many, but very few have answers. Firstly, the amount of time marijuana lasts in any individual’s body depends on the individual himself.
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For instance, you may get rid of it quickly compared to someone who smokes it every single day. Obviously, heavy usage matters and those that use it frequently will have a tougher time flushing THC out of their system.
Also, THC tends to build up more in your system as you continue to smoke or ingest marijuana. It accumulates and blends with fat stores as time goes by. Depending on your body’s metabolism, THC will exit sooner or later. Sure, there are many other factors involved, and that’s exactly what we will highlight in this article.
Types of tests to detect THC
If you’ve ever taken a drug test, you will know that there are several ways to figure out if there’s any THC in your system. Drug tests measure or detect THC not only by the main product but the by-products are also considered. Now, the biggest challenge is that these by-products tend to stay in the system even after marijuana’s effects are long gone.
Here are a few types of tests conducted to measure THC
There are many types of saliva tests done for detecting THC. Employers can choose among any of them. And now that technology is so advanced, saliva tests meant to particularly detect molecules of THC found especially in the mouth are really useful. However, the results will be positive only if you’ve smoked a joint a few hours ago.
Other types of saliva test detect THC in users that have indulged in marijuana even if it was a month ago. While occasional users don’t have to worry a lot, chronic users have something to worry about.
You have to remember that cannabis can enter salivary glands if you’re exposed to the smoke or of you smoke a joint yourself. As soon as the glands ingest cannabis, it will show up in tests. From cops to employers, saliva tests are pretty common now.
Urine tests – like saliva tests – also depend on how long you’ve been using marijuana. If you’re an occasional user, there isn’t much to worried about. For instance, if you have an interview or a drug test in a week, you can stop ingesting cannabis right away so that your urine doesn’t show any traces.
But, for chronic users, urine tests will detect THC even if they have smoked marijuana a month ago. By occasional users, we are talking about people that consume or smoke cannabis about once or twice a week. The THC will be out of your system in just 3-4 days.
Moderate users indulging in cannabis about 4-5 times a week will obviously have more THC in their urine. In such cases, it will take at least 7-10 days for the THC to exit your system. You’re considered a c_hronic user if you smoke every single day and it will take at least a fortnight for you to get rid of THC. And, if you’re ingesting cannabis multiple times in a day and abuse it every day, you may need more than a month for the THC to leave the bloodstream.
Urine tests are conducted in various ways. While some employers use strips that are dipped in urine to detect THC, others may collect your sample and send them to the lab. Depending on your weight and the amount of THC present in the bloodstream, the results may be positive or negative. Urine tests are most common compared to other types of tests.
Although blood tests aren’t as common as urine tests, some employers may rely on it. Again, the results may vary from one individual to another. The thing will blood tests, though, is that they are not as reliable as urine tests.
Blood tests are considered invasive and that’s also why you won’t see many employers using it. THC is unpredictable and can remain or exit the bloodstream depending on your lifestyle. Some metabolites of cannabis can remain in the bloodstream for more than a month at times.
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For occasional users, blood tests aren’t really a cause of concern since it only takes 3-4 days for the THC to exit the bloodstream. Compared to blood tests, urine tests are more reliable. Thus, you’ll see many institutions and employers insisting on urine tests rather than blood tests.
So, what happens when you smoke cannabis? Well, the THC enters the bloodstream in a matter of seconds. For heavy users, you’ll see traces of THC in the blood for more than 30 days. However, there may be no THC at all even if you use cannabis for 4-5 times a week. This is because the THC can dissolve in the fat tissues and be eliminated without a trace. Also, THC exits the system when you indulge in a workout or if you simply sweat. Thus, blood tests aren’t very reliable. Moreover, it is expensive compared to other tests, so it doesn’t make sense for employers to use blood tests.
Compared to saliva, blood and urine tests, hair tests detect THC even if you’ve smoked a joint 90 days ago! Hair follicle tests are used to detect many other medications and drugs. Employers rarely ask for hair tests, but in case they do insist on it, you’ll have to give them your hair samples and the results will be known in just a day.
For this test, a collector will remove at least 100 hairs from the crown of your head. If you’re bald or have shaved your head, they will take samples of your body hair instead. Once you smoke or ingest cannabis, THC can enter the hair follicles easily. It will remain in the follicles for at more than 90 days even as your hair grows longer.
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How Long Does Weed Stay in Your System?
Marijuana, sometimes referred to as weed, pot, dope, Mary Jane or cannabis, is the most commonly used federally illegal drug in the United States, with an estimated 48.2 million people using it in 2019. Marijuana refers to the dried flowers, leaves, stems and seeds of the cannabis plant and contains hundreds of compounds (often called cannabinoids). These compounds contain both tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is impairing or “mind-altering,” and cannabidiol (CBD), which is not impairing and does not cause a “high.”
Like many drugs, there are a variety of factors that can affect how long marijuana is detectable. How often a person uses marijuana, the THC content, body fat, genetics, how the drug test is measured (blood, urine, saliva, etc.) and many other factors can determine how long marijuana remains in a person’s system.
What Happens When You Consume Weed?
The effects of marijuana can vary from person to person — some feeling relaxed or euphoric, while others can feel anxious and paranoid. This can depend on a number of characteristics like genetics, body fat, THC content and how marijuana is ingested (smoking or eating). After smoking marijuana, THC rapidly enters the bloodstream, where it can make you feel “high.” If marijuana is ingested orally, usually as edibles, it takes longer to be absorbed into the blood and can range from about 20 minutes to an hour and a half.
Weed Side Effects
Short-term effects of consuming marijuana (memory, problem-solving, coordination and driving impairment) are more pronounced in the first hour or two but can last for up to 24 hours. Because there is so much variation between strains of marijuana, other effects can be varied.
Other effects can include:
- Dry mouth
- Swollen eyelids
- Increased appetite (“the munchies”)
- Distorted perception
- Loss of coordination
- Trouble with thinking, memory and problem solving
- Increased heart rate
How Is Weed Processed by the Body?
THC is a sticky, easily vaporized compound that readily dissolves into fats. Once in the body, it is deposited into fatty (adipose) tissue like the liver, lungs and spleen. THC is metabolized by the liver to 11-OH-THC and then further metabolized to an inactive compound (THCCOOH). There are two enzymes responsible for this metabolism, and there can be genetic variation in these — meaning some people may metabolize marijuana quickly and others will metabolize it slowly.
Factors Determining How Long Weed Stays in Your System
Many factors can affect the amount of time that marijuana remains in the body after consuming it. The effects of marijuana can be felt within minutes up to over an hour, depending on how it was consumed.
Other factors that can influence how long marijuana is detectable in the body include:
- Body fat percentage: Those with higher body fat percentages may have detectable levels of marijuana for a longer time.
- Genetics: Some people may be genetically predisposed to metabolizing marijuana more quickly or more slowly.
- Frequency of use: Infrequent users clear marijuana more quickly than frequent users.
- Other drugs or medications: The enzymes responsible for marijuana metabolism (CYP2C9 and CYP3A4) can be sped up or slowed down by other drugs or medications.
- Potency of marijuana
- Tolerance level
How Long Does It Take Weed to Leave Your System?
The half-life of a drug is the time it takes for the body to metabolize and eliminate half of the substance. While there are a variety of cannabinoids, THC is the one most drug tests look for. In the body, THC is broken down into metabolites, which are stored in body fat until finally being excreted through feces and urine.
Some marijuana metabolites have half-lives of 20 hours, but others can be as long as 10–13 days. It can ultimately take three to five half-lives for these metabolites to be completely eliminated. This means it can take between five and 65 days for marijuana to be completely eliminated, depending on factors like how often marijuana is consumed, body fat percentage, genetics and others.
How Long Does Weed Stay in Urine?
Urine tests can show recent marijuana use (not current intoxication) because of the delay between use and the body breaking THC down into metabolites. It can take an estimated one to four days for marijuana to be undetectable in urine, though some studies have shown detectable levels for up to 70 days with chronic use.
How Long Does Weed Stay in Your Blood?
Because marijuana stays in the bloodstream for a short time, blood tests are not usually used for this purpose, with the exception of automobile accidents and some roadside sobriety checkpoints. It can take an estimated 36 hours for marijuana to be undetectable in blood, though some reports suggest up to seven days with chronic use.
How Long Does Weed Stay in Your Hair?
Hair tests are not reliably able to detect marijuana use or to determine the amount consumed. Each centimeter of hair accounts for about a one-month period of time, so the detection period depends on hair length but is generally 90 days. First-time drug use in the last seven to 14 days cannot be detected due to the time that it takes for marijuana to reach the hair.
How Long Does Weed Stay in Your Saliva?
Like blood, marijuana is present in saliva for a short time. As a result, a saliva test could show current intoxication but would not indicate level of intoxication or impairment. Marijuana is detectable for an estimated 34 hours in saliva.
How Long Does Weed Stay in Breastmilk?
Breastmilk can contain THC for up to six days after use and can affect the newborn’s brain development, resulting in hyperactivity, poor cognitive function and other long-term consequences.
Will Weed Show Up on an Employment Drug Test?
Workplace testing often first entails an immunoassay test (EMRIT or RIA). If positive, it is then sent for gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer (GCMS), which is much more sensitive, so false positives are rare. At one time, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) would cause false positives for marijuana. However, today’s tests have eliminated that problem.
While marijuana is legal in some states, many employers have drug-free workplace policies. These workplaces often have random drug screening policies for current employees and routine testing for new employees to ensure their workplaces are drug-free. Your employment can be terminated for failing a drug test, even in states where marijuana has been legalized.
Detoxing From Weed
The only completely reliable way to pass a drug test is to stop using marijuana. While there are many tips and tricks for how to “beat” a drug test for marijuana, most have been shown to be urban legends.
Some of these questionable techniques include:
: This method entails drinking fluids and urinating several times prior to a drug test, then taking vitamin b-12 to add color to urine. This serves to dilute THC metabolites but does not eliminate them. : Exercising or spending time in the sauna prior to a drug test can actually backfire by releasing THC metabolites from fatty tissue into the blood. : Various companies sell substances or herbal teas claiming to “clean” the body’s traces of marijuana; however, there is little evidence to support this.
Marijuana Detox Facilities in Florida
Our treatment facilities offer medical and clinical treatments in a restorative setting where your successful recovery is our focus. In a medical detox program, your body slowly rids itself of the marijuana while under medical supervision. Doctors and nurses can quickly address any signs of withdrawal to make the process as safe and as comfortable as possible. Once patients have finished detox, they can transition directly into the full addiction treatment program.
Marijuana Addiction Treatment
The Recovery Village at Baptist Health offers a full continuum of care so that your recovery can be customized to your needs. After medical detox, marijuana addiction treatment might include either inpatient rehab where you live on-site, focused on recovery free of distractions, or outpatient rehab, where you live at home or in a sober living community and come to the facility regularly for appointments. Our partial hospitalization program (PHP) offers an intermediary step between inpatient treatment and outpatient rehab: more freedom during the day while keeping the benefit of medical supervision. Typically, outpatient rehab comes after successful inpatient rehab, where you have learned the skills necessary to live a marijuana-free life. We also provide mental health counseling for co-occurring disorders and aftercare for long-term recovery.
Depending on the level of care, we have a variety of indoor and outdoor amenities at our facility, including:
- Swimming pool
- Two fully equipped gyms
- Basketball courts
- Sand volleyball court
- Frisbee golf
- Horseshoe pits
- Multiple lounges with TVs
- Comfortable, hotel-style, semi-private rooms
Our licensed staff members are highly skilled in supporting our clients to find lasting recovery with compassionate care. As a member of the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers and a Gold Seal Joint Commission facility, we are here to provide evidence-based, high-quality addiction treatment. Contact us today to start your journey toward a marijuana-free life.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Health Effects of Marijuana.” Reviewed June 2, 2021. Accessed February 8, 2022.
Drugs.com. “How long does Marijuana stay in your system?” Updated April 7, 2021. Accessed February 8, 2022.
U.S. National Library of Medicine. “Marijuana intoxication.” Medline Plus, Updated February 4, 2022. Accessed February 10, 2022.
Huestis, Marilyn A. “Human Cannabinoid Pharmacokinetics.” Chemistry and Biodiversity, August 21, 2007. Accessed February 20, 2022.
Huestis, M. A.; Mitchell, J. M.; & Cone, E. J. “Detection times of marijuana metabolites in urine by immunoassay and GC-MS.” Journal of Analytical Toxicology, October 1995. Accessed February 10, 2022.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “What You Should Know About Using Cannabis, Including CBD, When Pregnant or Breastfeeding.” Updated October 16, 2019. Accessed February 8, 2022.
Dasgupta, Amitava. “How People Try to Beat Drug Testing.” American Association for Clinical Chemistry, February 1, 2015. Accessed February 10, 2022.
Exercise.com. “Will exercise help you to pass a drug test for cannabis?” Updated August 20, 2020. Accessed February 10, 2022.
The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.
How Long Does Weed Stay In Your System (Urine, Blood & Hair)?
In case you’re wondering how long does weed stay in your system you must already know that weed’s presence in your body doesn’t end when the high wears off. Indeed, tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the well-known chemical that gives us that ‘high’ feeling, can stay in your system for several days or even weeks.
Some factors that influence the question ‘how long does weed stay in your system?’ include test sensitivity, body fat, gender, hydration, metabolism, and usage.
Join us as we discover the ins and outs of how long it takes for weed to leave your system and all about it.
Why should you know how long marijuana can stay in your system?
Whether you’re ensuring you’re clean for your current job, a new job, university, or your upcoming travel plans, it’s best to stay on top of things. First, you need to know how long THC can stay in your system after you’ve consumed it.
You need to have a clean drug test for certain aspects of life, and failing this could be detrimental to your future. Luckily we have your back in knowing how long does it can take for marijuana to leave your system to ensure you pass your drug test.
How long does weed stay in your system?
THC is known as a lipid-soluble compound. It binds to the body’s fat molecules, which increases the time it takes for your body to metabolize it completely.
Tests can detect weed in your urine, salivary glands, blood, and hair. Each remains for a specific time after you last consumed THC.
So, how long does marijuana stay in your system?
How long does THC stay in urine?
When testing for THC, the classic pee-in-a-cup method is the most commonly used. How long marijuana will stay in your urine all depends on how frequently you consume it:
- Infrequent consumer (around three times per week): three days
- Moderate consumer (four times per week): five to seven days
- Persistent consumer (every day): 10 to 15 days
- Persistent heavy consumer (multiple times per day): more than 30 days
How long does THC stay in saliva glands?
Authorities can also detect marijuana through your saliva; this method is a staple for roadside testing, so how long does THC stay in saliva glands?
- Occasional consumer: one to three days
- Chronic consumer: one to 29 days
How long does THC stay in your blood?
Weed usually stays in your bloodstream for one to two days, yet there have been cases where it was detected up to 25 days later. Constant heavy use increases the timespan of how long it can take for weed to leave your system. Blood testing, however, is usually used to indicate more recent use of marijuana.
How long does weed stay in your hair?
Surprisingly, your hair follicles could be the reason you fail a drug test up to 90 days after you consume weed!
The detection period depends on your hair length. Since the average human hair grows roughly 0.5 inches per month, a 1.5-inch hair section taken from your scalp can reveal a window of THC use for the previous three months.
Six factors that can affect how long it can take for weed to leave your system
Several factors affect how long weed could stay in your body. For example, your age, weight, or gender aren’t associated with the cannabis itself but with how your body metabolizes the marijuana.
Other factors are associated with the weed directly and how you use it, namely your doses and frequency. Higher, more frequent doses tend to increase the time of how long it could take weed to get out of your system.
Here are six factors that can affect how long it can take for weed to leave your system:
A variety of THC tests can be done, such as urine, hair, blood, or saliva tests, and each has different sensitivities. For example, more sensitive tests can recognize lower amounts of THC present.
As mentioned before, fat molecules store THC; therefore, people with a higher body fat percentage metabolize weed slower than a person with less.
Body fat also plays a role in gender and how long weed is in your system for
Usually, women have more body fat than men, so a woman’s body would take longer to metabolize the THC after consuming marijuana.
Dehydration increases the THC concentration in your body.
Hydration might just be your cheat code when passing a drug test. However, don’t rely on it too much as the hydration claim is very controversial in whether it works or not.
For a negative drug test, your body must first process and get rid of all the THC in your system. Some people have fast metabolisms, and others not.
Bodies with quicker metabolisms can remove THC at a faster rate than those with slower ones.
Frequency of usage
It’s impossible to predict how long weed will stay in your system because, as you’ve learned, there are a few factors that affect it.
Here is a ‘how long does marijuana stay in your system’ chart (remember these are estimations and can alter depending on one’s frequency of use and dosage).
|Usage||Estimate of detection time chart|
|One time only||Between 4-8 days|
|2-4 times per month||10-18 days|
|2-4 times per week||20-35 days|
|5-6 times per week||30-50 days|
|Everyday use||About 50-70 days after last use|
Things you can do to shorten how long it takes for weed to get out of your system
These things could be your cheat codes to how long it takes for weed to get out of your system.
However, these actions are controversial and could just be stoner myths, but rather give them a try than fail an upcoming drug test!
1. Detox pills
If you’re running out of time and your drug test is coming up in the next 5-15 days, detox pills are the perfect option.
Detox pills speed up the time your body metabolizes toxins, therefore reducing how long weed will stay in your system.
2. Conduct a natural marijuana detox
If you don’t want to buy and take detox pills, try THC detox the natural way.
Someone who stays healthy and in shape can get rid of THC in their body within 4-6 weeks by maintaining a nutritious diet, drinking lots of water, and exercising daily.
3. Try a home remedy
Lemon Juice and Water
Lemon juice is full of antioxidants like vitamin A and C, which eliminate toxins from the body.
To make this drink, mix one tablespoon of lemon juice into 500ml of water and sip throughout the day. Try to drink this mixture 6-7 times a day leading up to your drug test.
Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has antibacterial properties that help your body rid itself of toxins and shorten how long it can take for weed to leave your system—It reduces traces of THC in your body.
To make this drink, mix eight ounces of distilled water with two tablespoons of unfiltered apple cider vinegar. To make this mixture taste a bit better, try adding a sweetener like honey.
Key takeaways about how long does weed stay in your body
It’s difficult to know precisely how long weed is in your system after you’ve consumed it. As you’ve learned, it varies from person to person and depends on the various factors mentioned.
One could try the detox route before an upcoming drug test but remember that it’s not something to rely on fully.
You can never learn too much. We recommend reading about what THC does to brain and body. Who knows, maybe you could discover your own detox method.