How Long Does Weed Stay In Your System?

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The answer to question ‘how long does weed stay in your body’ depends on how often or how much cannabis the user has been ingesting or smoking. The effects of weed consumption are short lived but its stay in the body for weeks or even longer.


How weeds affects your body

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The active ingredient in weed is called THC which rapidly enters the body’s blood stream right after smoking. While it takes longer to get absorbed in the blood usually 20 minutes to an hour and half, when it is ingested rather than smoked.

Some of marijuana’s effect may last longer up to 24 hours, however, most of its effects on memory, learning, problem-solving, and coordination fades away within one to two hours. The studies quoted by the National Highway Safety Administration show marijuana intake may impair driving performance up to three hours.

After a short time about few hours, it is not possible to detect THC in the blood stream because it is rapidly broken down and modified into molecules known as metabolites. There are 80 different metabolites, at least, that are formed from THC. These metabolites become the part of body fats from where they are eliminated through feces and urine.

how long does weed stay in your blood

Why it is hard to detect weed in the blood stream

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Blood tests are not usually used to assess the level of marijuana in the blood stream. Unlike alcohol intoxication the concentration tests don’t indicate a level of intoxication or impairment in case of marijuana intake because it stays in the bloodstream for only a short time.

Marijuana metabolites that show recent marijuana use can be detected with urine test but these tests fall short to assess intoxication or impairment. Therefore, most workplaces use urine tests to detect any recent use of the drug.

How long weed can be detected

As marijuana is entered in our body system, it starts breaking down it into metabolites and their elimination half- life ranges from 20 hours to 13 days. A substance takes five to six half-lives for almost entire elimination. It means one-time use if not detectable after five to eight days. Therefore most researchers are of the view that urine tests cannot detect the drug in the body after 13 days.

However, the length to time weed remains detectable in the body depends upon how often the person smokes, how much he smokes and how long he has been smoking according to some anecdotal evidence.  This time is 45 days since last intake for regular users while in case of heavy users positive tests are reported 90 days after quitting.

How Long Does Weed Stay in Your Urine

How reliable are weed urine tests?

passing a urine screen for weed

The frequency of false positive is common for other substances but in case of marijuana it is rare due to sophisticated tests used. Today’s tests are adjusted in such a way that no known substance can cause a false marijuana positive. At a time, ibuprofen (sold over-the-counter as Advil, Mortin, and Nuprin) would cause such false positives.

Is there a way to beat the test?

You may see many tips claiming there is a way to fool marijuana drug test. Some of these questionable techniques include:

Plenty of liquid intake: The propagators of this tip claim drinking a lot of water or liquids and urinating several times before the test with a vitamin B-12 intake can be handy to deceive the test. As a matter of fact, it may help to reduce the percentage of THC found in the urine by diluting it but it is not possible to totally eliminate THC from the system.

Using drug cleaning substances: There are various substances and herbal teas marketed as capable of ‘cleaning’ the body system of traces of marijuana. However conclusive evidence is lacking to prove the credibility of such claims. If such substances need to be used over extended period of time to get rid of marijuana from body then during that duration body will naturally eliminate THC from the body any way.

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Tinkering with the test: Some people believe results of a urine test can be tampered by adding certain substances to the sample. But addition of such items in order to contaminate the sample are easily detected by the sample.

Mind you may fail the test

Employers take alcohol and drug abuse very seriously as it may cause huge problems for them. Therefore many employers adhere to a drug policy that includes random testing for current employees and routing testing for all new job applicants. If you are ask to take a urine test on short notice for employment, you probably going to fail the test particularly if you are regular or heavy pot smoker. The reliable way to avoid test failure is to stop smoking or ingesting marijuana or cannabis products.


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