How long does marijuana stay in your system? This question has probably crossed your mind at least once or twice. And yes, it is a question that has elicited mixed reactions and sparked heated debates.
With all the hullabaloo and brouhaha going around about it, perhaps delving into the issue to unveil the mysteries would do some justice. And yes, I must point out that this is a rather tricky question, which has no definite or straight answer due to various factors.
Factors Involved & Detection Times
What are some of these factors?
Well, there exist numerous test procedures whose sensitivity is varied. This means that some test procedures could detect marijuana content in your system more than 30 days after you last used it. At the same time, other tests could fail to indicate the presence of marijuana in your system a few weeks after your last use.
That is why I earlier pointed out that the duration within which you can test positive for marijuana varies. However, what you need to understand is the fact that failure by tests to identify the presence of weed in your system does not imply that there are no traces; it means that the traces cannot be detected.
All said, back to the question. Conventionally, it is believed that one can test positive for THC up to 30 days after use. However, given the fact that there are numerous testing techniques like the use of urine, blood, hair, sweat, saliva and sometimes one’s nails, this duration could vary depending on the method used for testing.
Metabolic nature of individuals also alters this time. This implies that the amount of time one can test positive to a cannabis test could vary from one individual to another.
For this reason, one person could test positive for the presence of pot in their system and have another person whom they had used together test negative. This makes it hard for one to give a precise time within which marijuana can be in one’s system.
How Long Does It Stay in Your Blood?
Generally, cannabis or marijuana can stay in your blood for up to two days after using it only once. Meanwhile, if you are a regular user of weed, your body will take longer to recover from it. For long time users, this process may take up to 7-8 days in some cases. Having said that, it is not always the same for everyone. There are tons of variables that contribute to the process going faster or slower, these variables are:
- Amount consumed
- Body mass
- Type of drug test
- Type of consumption (edibles or smoking)
- What is being looked for
How Long Does it Stay in Your Urine?
Basically the same thing with how long weed stays in your blood, the same concepts applies to your urine. There are so many internal and external factors that contribute to how long it stays in your body. For instance, there was a case where a veteran smoker was tested positive for THC in his urine 2 months after he has stopped smoking. That's crazy!
Here are some answers to your questions:
- If you only use once, the THC metabolite can stay for about 5-8 days.
- If you have at it for 2-4 times per week then the substance can stay for about 11-18 days.
- If you do it 5-6 times a week, it could take up to 48 days to get rid of it completely.
- And, for everyday smokers, it could take any where from 49 to 63 days before it completely goes out of your system.
All Things Considered...
However, to give a reliable answer to this question, we need to try and hold several factors constant. While all the tests provide varied accuracy, hair test has proven to provide the highest detection of up to 90 days after the last use.
For occasional users, marijuana can be detected in their system less than 10 days after the last joint although the quantity they took also affects that time. For regular users, weed can be detected in their system up to 40 days after their last joint. However, for the frequent and heavy smoker, pot can be detected in their system 90 days after their last joint.
For blood tests, it is believed that one can test positive for THC use up to 6 months later.
Urine tests do not share the same length of accuracy (usually 30 days). Taking a lot of water is one way of reducing chances of testing positive during a urine marijuana test. This is because taking too much water dilutes your urine and makes chances of cannabis detection quite minimal.
In a nutshell, while the amount of time marijuana stays in one’s system varies, it is crystal clear that the test conducted significantly affects the results. Whether you undertake blood, urine, and hair or nail test, the results might vary.