It’s something we’ve all thought about. The high is great today, but do I have to be worried about tomorrow? How long does weed stay in your system? The total amount of time that weed stays in your system depends on the conditions of the user and how frequently they smoke marijuana. As you continue to consume cannabis, the THC accumulates in the body. The more cannabis you consume, the longer it will take for the THC to clear out of your system. How quickly you personally metabolize THC as an individual will also affect how long the chemical stays in your system. There are several other important factors involved, too, such as how you are being tested. Given all of these variables, here is information to gauge how long cannabis stays in your system:
THC in urine
So how long does weed stay in your system? The most common way to test for THC, the primary psychoactive found in cannabis, is via simple urine testing. Urine testing is both the cheapest method and it has a long detection period. Urine and other tests like it do not test for THC itself specifically, but rather for a THC metabolite called THC-COOH. The presence of this metabolite means that the body has recently processed the chemical.
The length of time will vary depending on how often you consume the good green herb. When it comes to how long weed stays in your system, THC is stored in the body’s fat, and therefore accumulates in the body gradually over time. It essentially doesn’t matter how you consume cannabis, the more you smoke, vape, or eat the herb, the longer it will be detectable in your urine. Here’s what you should know before you find yourself peeing in one of those little cups.
In general, here’s how long cannabis can be found in your system:
- For single use: up to 8 days
- For frequent use: up to 15 days
- For regular use: up to 30 days
- For heavy use: up to 45-77 days
As a general guide, if you’re a regular consumer of marijuana, the chances are THC will remain in your urine for even up to a month after stopping. That’s why it’s good to stay frosty, on your toes, since this is also the most likely and frequent way you’ll be tested for weed in your system.
Do not panic. We’re here to get through this together. Hoping to ultimately pass a urine test? Read more down below.
THC in saliva
If you are going to be tested by your saliva, you might wonder how long does weed stay in your system. Here’s some good news for you. Generally speaking, THC lasts the shortest time in the saliva. This is the testing method most often used by road police officers in checking for drugged drivers under the influence. THC metabolites will show up in your saliva about 1 hour after smoking marijuana and can remain testing positive in saliva for up to 24 hours after even a single smoking session. In the case of regular consumers, this number can reach up to 72 hours after smoking.
Since THC accumulates in your system over time, most heavy consumers are recommended to wait at least for one week before taking a saliva test. For a quick reference on how long weed stay in your saliva, here’s a cheat sheet:
- For single use: up to 24 hours
- For frequent use: up to 72 hours
- For chronic, heavy use: up to one week
An effective solution for those that have to remove their saliva toxins is Clear Choice Oral Clear. Clear Choice Oral Clear is undetectable and only requires you to simply chew on a gum capsule and after 30 seconds, presto, you will be toxin free for up to 30 minutes.
Hoping to clear THC from your system? Learn how here.
THC in hair
As far as the question to how long does weed stay in your system, hair can often be a chief concern. Though there is a lot of debate on whether or not hair testing is actually accurate, since cannabis is thought to have the longest detection window in hair. All standard hair tests look for the presence of drugs over the last 90 days.
Since hair grows at a fairly standard, consistent rate, laboratory technicians will test a short hair sample taken extremely close to the scalp. This sample will provide a record of your overall health and even what you’ve consumed over the past three months. What the technicians will ultimately look for depends on what was ordered in the test, so if you aren’t being scanned for drugs use don’t get worried over nothing.
Cannabis metabolites will show up in hair after about seven days post-consumption of pot, but hair testing for cannabis is not very common.
Clear Choice Hair Follicle Shampoo is an easy to use, and effective detox shampoo, that coats the hair follicles so the toxins are not detectable to many tests.
Hoping to pass a hair follicle test? Learn more here.
THC in blood
Some officers opposing recreational cannabis use are attempting to prevent driving under the influence of cannabis with roadside blood testing. That might make you concerned for how long does weed stay in your system. However, blood testing for cannabis is not extremely common. THC and THC metabolites do not stay in the blood for very long. Instead, the cannabinoid likes to quickly find itself a nice, fatty spot to land. Getting an impromptu blood test for cannabis would be fairly unusual, so take a quick second to glance over the doctor or police officer for a Dracula cape. Just in case.
In general, here’s how long you can expect to test positive for THC in the blood:
- For single use: up to 24 hours
- For frequent use: up to 3 days
- For regular use: up to 1 week
Are you hoping to pass a blood test? Read more here.
How to pass a urine test
Unfortunately, there is ultimately no certain way to pass a urine test without traces of THC, especially if you are a particularly heavy smoker. In the end of many scenarios, it doesn’t matter how long does weed stay in your system. There are products out there, like detox pills, and detox drinks, that can be purchased solely for the purpose of cleaning your urine for drug traces. Some smokers, in desperate cases, will even go as far as to use synthetic urine to pass a test, which can be pretty risky.
Many people attempt to pass a urine test by drinking excessive water to dilute the system. If urine is too diluted, however, you risk not passing a urine test anyway. Though there is no scientific evidence to back these claims, many desperate consumers rely on the fruit pectin method to clean out THC metabolites. Fruit pectin is a starch derided from the cell walls of produce, often used in jams and preservatives. It should be easy to find some at larger grocery stores. This method goes as follows:
- Mix fruit pectin with an electrolyte drink like Gatorade
- Drink at least two hours before a urine test (and possibly a day or two before as well, wouldn’t hurt)
- Follow with a bottle or two of water and some B vitamins
The theory behind this is that because the fruit pectin is a naturally occurring fiber that it makes more THC exit through the bowels, not the urine as THC usually would. However, it’s always important to stay safe and do everything in moderation. There is no foolproof way to pass a urine test, and many detox methods may actually make you sick. If you can see a urine test coming on the horizon, for a job screening or participating in sports, try to slow your roll on smoking marijuana.
Again, the best way to know how long weed will stay in your system or pass a urine test is to stick safely and generously to the time guidelines above!
How long other chemicals stay in the system
There you have it. Now, no matter the method of testing, you know how does long weed stay in your system. When compared to most substances, cannabis stays in your system for a very long time. If you are a frequent drug user, it’d be useful to know the distinctions between different narcotics and how long they’ll remain in your system. Better safe than sorry. In general, here’s how long different substances will show up positive in a urine test:
- Amphetamines: up to 2-3 days
- Alcohol: up to 5 days
- Cocaine: up to 2-10 days
- Phencyclidine (PCP): up to 7 days
- Opiates (including heroin): up to 2-5 days
- LSD: up to 2-3 days
- Psilocybin: up to 5 days
- Ecstasy/MDMA/Molly/Sass: up to 1-3 days
In blood and saliva tests, as far as how long does weed stay in your system, expect traces of these substances to be present for up to 24 hours. As mentioned above the standard hair test will check for a 90-day history of substance use.
Drug testing is a standard part of life for many in the working world these days. However, because of the varying detection windows for each of these substances, it is easier to get away with having a problem with amphetamines than it is to be a cannabis smoker.
So How Long Does Weed Stay In Your System
Given the technology that is available, shouldn’t there be some leniency towards the frequency of use with cannabis? It is legal in some states and countries now, after all, with more places lining up to legalize every day. Why should you continue to worry about how long does weed stay in your system.
In fact, after legalization, if drug testing is not altered, the risk to the workforce is extreme. With 13 percent (one in eight) of US residents admitting to regular cannabis consumption, demonizing cannabis consumers in the workplace could result in a giant loss for local businesses.
Cannabis stays in the system longer than almost all other chemicals in the body because it accumulates in body fat. However, everyone knows that you´re not necessarily high 12 hours after use. The best advice to those that are afraid of the ever prevalent urine test? Push for reform. Fail that? Stick to jobs that don´t require it!