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How Long Cannabis is Detectable in The System?

THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is a cannabis cannabinoid that can stay in the body for several days, even weeks. It’s responsible for providing high effects. The duration of the effects of THC depends on several factors, such as:

  • How much have you consumed?
  • How long have you been consuming marijuana?
  • What’s your body’s fat?
  • What’s your sensitivity to marijuana?
  • How have you consumed cannabis, i.e., delivery method?

Unlike alcohol or drugs, the effects of marijuana don’t disappear within a few hours. They last longer instead. Drug tests can detect THC in urine, saliva, blood, and hair.

In this blog post, we are going to discuss how drug tests work, the estimated time for the detection of cannabis compounds in the blood, saliva, urine, and hair, etc.

Drug Tests For THC

When you consume marijuana, THC levels rise in the body. After a single use, THC can be detectable for a few hours to 24 hours. Over time, THC levels start dropping significantly.

THC, CBD, and their metabolites are lipid-soluble and bind to fat. That’s why these compounds stay longer as compared to other recreational drugs, especially for chronic consumers. However, with the passage of time, the compounds are released.

Usually, employers go for urine tests. In fact, urine tests are the only tests recommended by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration (SAMHSA). The urine tests look for the levels of the THC metabolite THC-COOH. In most tests, the cut-off value is 50 ng/ml. However, the cut-off may be between 15 ng/mL and 100 ng/ml.

The amount of THC and its metabolites detected in the drug test varies from consumer to consumer. This is because every consumer has a different body chemistry and symptoms. Additionally, the frequency of cannabis consumption and dosage matter.

How Long Marijuana Stays in The Body?

To understand this, it’s necessary to learn how it gets absorbed in the body. When you use marijuana, its active ingredients such as THC reach the bloodstream, from where it’s distributed in various parts of the body including the brain. THC binds to cannabinoid receptors, particularly CB1 and CB2 receptors to deliver mind-altering effects. It stimulates the brain’s reward system and increases the levels of dopamine and other neurotransmitters that are linked to happiness and pleasure.

How you consume cannabis greatly influences the amount of time THC stays in your system. By inhaling cannabis, you can feel the effects much faster than ingesting the substance.

When you smoke or vape marijuana, cannabinoids are absorbed in the body instantly. The effects may last for a few hours, depending on your metabolism rate and potency of cannabis consumed.

The onset is delayed in the case of edibles. So, you have to wait from 30 minutes to 2 hours to feel the effects. Due to slow absorption, cannabis-infused foods and beverages last longer.

Many medical experts say that there’s no way to predict how long a consumer would test positive for THC. According to a review by Paul Cary, the duration in some cases may exceed 30 days. Paul is the Director of the Toxicology & Drug Monitoring Laboratory at the University of Missouri.

Cary believes that marijuana detection in the body depends on the frequency of use and sensitivity of the urine test.

If you consume cannabis for 2-4 days a week, THC can be detectable in the urine for 11-18 days. However, it’s 33-48 days for consumers who use the herb 5-6 days a week.

However, some cannabis products (especially sold by unauthorized sources) may contain higher levels of cannabinoids than what’s marketed, thus delivering unexpected high and longer effects. So, always visit a licensed dispensary for purchasing high-quality cannabis. In a marijuana legalized state, you can access medical dispensaries legally with an MMJ card Oxnard.

Related- Why do You Need a Medical Cannabis Card in 2020?

Let’s explore how long THC stays in the blood, saliva, and hair.

In Blood

After THC is metabolized by the body, it can be detected in the blood for several hours to 1-2 days. This is for single use. However, if you use marijuana multiple times a day, THC can stay longer, up to a week. Blood tests for THC detection are rare and are usually preferred after a false positive on previous tests.

In Saliva

THC is detectable in the saliva for about an hour after consumption. However, it remains detectable until you consume the whole product. It usually takes 1-2 days after use.

To remove THC from the saliva fast, drinking a lot of water, brushing your teeth, and eating fatty foods can help. Saliva tests are usually preferred for testing marijuana use in drivers. However, some think that these tests aren’t reliable.

In Hair

THC metabolites stay in the hair longer. Hair tests check 1.5 inches of hair, and they can show up three months of cannabis use. However, some tests reveal marijuana use, even over longer periods.

How Long Effects of CBD Oils Last?

Although CBD doesn’t provide the same effects as THC, it gets stored in the body. Again, the duration of CBD effects depends on factors such as metabolism, frequency of use, dosage, method of consumption, and potency of products.

According to a 2005 study published in Therapeutic Drug Monitoring, participants took marijuana extracts with 2.5 mg of THC and 1.35 mg of CBD. CBD was detectable in the blood for up to 9 hours after consumption.

In a 2016 study published in the Journal of Pain, researchers analyzed the effects of CBD oils, flowers, capsules, etc. Of the 40 participants, 15 were tested positive for CBD in urine tests taken 2 hours after consumption. Additionally, researchers noted that cannabidiol wasn’t detectable in the urine after 24 hours.

How to Get Marijuana Compounds Out From The System Quickly?

Drug tests are usually conducted by employers to test for marijuana use in current employees and new hires. If your employer requires the drug test, and you have used cannabis recently, chances are more that you will fail the test. However, the results depend on the frequency of marijuana use. In some recreational states, employers may fire employees who fail the drug tests.

One of the best ways to pass the test is to stop consuming marijuana products. Here are some other techniques to get cannabis out from your system.

Drink Water

Dehydration can increase your chances of failing drug tests. So, drinking a lot of water and urinating many times can help remove cannabis compounds. Many experts say that it can help reduce the THC percentage in the urine, but can’t eliminate THC metabolites completely.


Exercising may help the system to metabolize THC, thus reducing its percentage. According to the Drug and Alcohol Dependence, working out can release THC stored in the fat.

Key Takeaways

The effects of marijuana on the body depend on several factors. These include consumption method, dosage, the concentration of cannabinoids, body weight, etc. Research says that when you consume marijuana, THC gets absorbed in the bloodstream instantly and stays in the system for several hours. However, THC metabolites stay longer, and drug tests check these metabolites to detect cannabis in the system. Popular tests for marijuana detection are the urine test, saliva test, hair test, and blood test, and the results of each vary.

Cannabis abstinence can increase the chances of passing the drug test. Some experts say that drinking a lot of water, exercising, and eating fatty foods can help get marijuana out of the system quickly.

Get an MMJ card from Oxnard to access medical marijuana products from licensed dispensaries.