Marijuana also known as cannabis or weeds has been an obsession for many. As per the marijuana users’ statistics provided by statista.com, roughly 234 million people consumed cannabis in the same year worldwide.
According to evidence from studies, the human body has endocannabinoid receptors that accept the cannabinoids from the weeds. Human body processes the cannabinoids in several ways and produces many byproducts that stay in the body for a long time.
So how long does weed stay in your system? For how long marijuana lasts in your body depends on several factors and on which system we’re taking into consideration.
How long does weed (marijuana) stay in your system?
If you are facing a drug screening test or for medical reasons, you may want to get rid of metabolites of weed from your body. Thus you may want to know how long the effects of cannabis last or how long the weed stays in your system.
Drugs and metabolites of substances you use are traceable in blood, urine, saliva or hair through lab tests. These drug tests will provide a definite answer to your question – how long does marijuana last in your system.
The metabolization of THC takes place very quickly in your body. After taking cannabis, you don’t stay high for a long time because your body quickly metabolizes all the psychoactive substances you inhaled or ate.
However, the metabolites of cannabinoids can stay in your fatty tissues or hair follicles for a long time. These metabolites do not have any psychoactive ability but clear indicators of previous cannabis use.
It differs according to system, dose, frequency, and duration
So, how long does marijuana stays in your system? It depends on what system of the body you take into consideration. Again, it may differ for THC, its waste metabolite, or THC-COOH.
The active cannabinoids like TCH or delta-9 THC of the weed will not stay in the body for a long time. However, the inactive metabolites of the weed like THC-COOH remain in different parts of the body for a longer time.
According to the frequency and dose of marijuana use, it is detectable in bodily fluids for 1 to 30 days. Its metabolites may be detectable in hair for several months.
Marijuana detection window depends on how often you smoke or how much you ingest.
If you are taking it in higher doses and more frequently then it stays in your system for a longer time.
People who are addicted to cannabis with daily use may show its traces in their system for several months after the last use.
Let us now analyze the detection windows for cannabis in hair, urine, blood, and saliva.
How long does weed stay in your urine?
Urine testing is a commonly followed drug detection method.
It should be noted that your body is eager to absorb and process psychoactive THC and other active cannabinoids from the weed you consume.
Technically speaking, only the metabolites of weed like THC-COOH are detectable in urine.
According to a Mayo Clinic Proceedings the presence of weed in your system is detectable in urine for the following amounts of time from last use:
- One time/Occasional users: 3 days
- Moderately using weed up to four times a week: up to 7 days
- Chronic/Daily users: up to 15 days
- Heavy users taking multiple shorts per day: from 30 to 90 days
How long does marijuana stay in your blood?
Blood testing is apt for detecting recent use of marijuana by anyone.
The cannabinoids in weed get into the bloodstream within seconds after smoking or ingesting it.
Undoubtedly, you get quick euphoric sensations of being high after having weed because of the fast movement of active cannabinoids via blood to the brain.
A report published by Therapeutic Drug Monitoring says the cannabinoids from weed stay in blood up to 48 hours after the last use.
However, in some rare cases, it’s been detected after 25 days; it happens with chronic heavy users of marijuana.
How long does cannabis stay in your saliva?
First and foremost, saliva is typically linked to blood concerning the time span weed sticks around in it. A saliva test looks for the same active THC that a blood test does.
Within a few minutes after smoking or ingesting the weed, its metabolites appear in saliva.
In addition, when you smoke weed, Delta-9 THC, the psychoactive kind, coats the inside of your mouth and gets soaked up by your saliva glands.
According to evidence available from saliva test results the detection window for marijuana in saliva is:
- Occasional users: 1 to 3 days
- Chronic users: 1 to 29 days
Generally, THC will stay in your saliva for one or two days after your last puff.
How long does THC stay in your hair?
Proof for cannabis consumption stays for the longest time in your hair. In the case of chronic heavy users, hair follicle tests may show up traces of weed up to a year through advanced hair testing methods.
However, common hair tests for drugs can typically reveal the history of cannabis use up to 90 days back.
According to evidence from clinical drug tests, the metabolites of drugs can stay in hair follicles up to three months.
When you use weed, its metabolites reach the hair follicle via small blood vessels. Gradually, a considerable amount of metabolites of weed get accumulated in the hair follicles.
On an average, hair grows approximately .5 inches per month. Therefore, one and a half inch hair segment took close to the scalp may give a window for marijuana use for the past three months.
How long does weed take to metabolize?
The active substance in weed is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is one of the 113 chemical compounds found in weed.
The liver breaks down THC into more than 80 metabolites. The most significant metabolites of THC are THCCOOH (11-nor-9-carboxy-delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) and 11-OH-THC (11-hydroxy-delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol).
Within a few minutes after having weed THC gets into the bloodstream and then reaches to the brain to produce psychoactive effects. Some portion of it is temporarily stored in organs and fatty tissues.
Importantly, THC reaching the kidneys may be reabsorbed into the bloodstream once again to some extent.
Finally, THC and its metabolites go out of the body via urine and stool
Factors that affect how long marijuana stays in your system
‘For how long weed stay in your system’ is not identically same for all users. There are a few individual factors that influence it.
A person’s age, gender, and body weight play a major role in the metabolization and elimination of a drug in the system.
Individual habits of using the weed are closely related to the retention and elimination of drug in the body. For example, the metabolites of marijuana stay for a longer time in the system of the chronic heavy user.
In addition, certain species of weed has a higher amount of THC in them. Apparently, persons using weeds with a higher concentration of THC retain it in the body for a longer time.
Similarly, ingesting weed puts higher deposits of THC in the system than smoking.
It should be noted that persons with a weak function of liver or kidneys will take much longer time for metabolizing and eliminating the weed from the system.
How to help weed to metabolize faster?
There isn’t any special technique to boost the process of metabolizing THC in your body.
If your liver and kidneys are functioning healthy, you can expect a faster elimination of THC from your body. However, the body takes its own sweet time to complete the elimination process.
Apart from these, eating healthy, keeping your body well hydrated and getting enough physical exercise can quicken this process to some extent.
How long does it take for the effects of marijuana to wear off?
The effects of marijuana, such as euphoria and a sense of relaxation, do not last very long. Normally, the effects of marijuana smoking die down within 4 hours. However, when you ingest weed, its effects remain in peak between 4 to 6 hours.
Chronic weed users develop a progressive tolerance to THC. Therefore, the effects of the weed last for a shorter period for them.
The height of euphoric effect also depends on the dose and frequency of consuming it.
The long-term effects of weed in your system can last of several days, weeks or months. Chronic users may suffer lifelong side effects of cannabis.
There are several detox remedies available for getting rid of the side effects of weeds.
Keeping your body well hydrated, eating a healthy diet, and exercising daily can reduce the THC effects on your body. You may also find herbal supplements that contain creatinine or vitamin B-12 to dilute the harmful effects of weed.
The Bottom Line
In conclusion, THC from marijuana may stay in your system anywhere from several days to several months after last use.
Detection window for weed depends on the type of drug test used and other factors specific to the user.
In addition, frequency, dose, mode of use (smoking/ingesting), and duration of using the weed matters.
So how long does weed stay in your system?
Active THC stays for 2 to 4 days in blood and saliva. But in urine, the traces of weed stay for a week or more. And with hair, it’ll stay with you up to 90 days.