How Long Can Marijuana Be Detected In Your System?
Marijuana can be detected in your system for an average of 3 to 30 days after last use. Factors that affect marijuana’s detection time include frequency of use and body mass index (BMI).
From 2017 to 2019, about 1.5 million Ohioans reported ingesting marijuana at least once in the past year. Marijuana in Ohio is legal for medical use and illegal for recreational use.
A positive result on a marijuana drug test may result in loss of employment or referral to substance abuse treatment programs.
Marijuana can be detected in your system for up to 90 days after the last use. The average detection window for marijuana use varies between 3 to 30 days after the last use, depending on the frequency of use.
Drug Tests & Detection Times For Marijuana Use
The parent drug THC has a short half-life and is unreliable for drug testing. Instead, drug screenings search for a metabolite of THC, or a unique component produced by the body. The primary THC metabolite used in drug screening is THC-COOH.
THC-COOH does not cause the effects of marijuana, which means that a positive test result for THC-COOH may be indicative of recent cannabis consumption, not current impairment.
Substances that can cause a false positive marijuana test may include ibuprofen, secondhand marijuana smoke, and hemp seeds.
Repeated cannabis use can increase the detection time of marijuana. THC levels can build up in the body if you are ingesting marijuana weekly, daily, or multiple times daily. Other factors that affect detection times of marijuana may include body fat and concomitant drug use.
Marijuana Urine Drug Test
Urine drug tests can detect marijuana and its metabolites for an average of 3 to 30 days after the last use. The detection time can correlate with the frequency of use. Infrequent users may have a shorter detection window than those who use the drug daily.
Urine is a common form of drug testing in the state of Ohio, especially amongst employers and addiction treatment programs.
Marijuana Saliva Drug Test
Marijuana and its metabolites may be present in oral fluid for about 1 day after the last use. Compared to urine tests, saliva tests may be less preferable by healthcare professionals due to the short detection time and potential accuracy issues caused by eating or drinking.
Marijuana Blood Drug Test
Marijuana and its metabolites may stay in the blood for between 8 hours to 1 day after the last use.
Blood tests can test for active THC, instead of THC metabolites. This type of test may be performed on patients showing side effects of recent marijuana use, such as impairment and sluggishness.
Marijuana Hair Drug Test
Marijuana and its metabolites may be present in hair follicles for up to 90 days after the last use.
Hair testing may have long detection windows compared to other forms of drug testing. However, hair testing may not detect the concentration of THC ingested over a period of time. These tests may be more accurate in cases of heavy use.
Half-Life Of Marijuana
Half-life refers to the length of time it takes for a drug to decrease to half of its peak concentration. After about five half-life cycles
The half-life of the parent drug, delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, is only 30 minutes. THC, which causes the relaxant and psychoactive effects of marijuana, only lasts for a short amount of time in the body.
While the parent drug has a short half-life, the drug’s metabolites, or unique components produced by the body, have longer half-lives. These metabolites may not directly affect the body, but can be useful for drug testing.
If you receive a positive test result for marijuana use, we can help. Ohio Recovery Center offers substance use disorder treatment options that address marijuana addiction and other issues. To find out if our program works for you or your loved one, please contact us today.
- Mayo Clinic Laboratories https://www.mayocliniclabs.com/test-catalog/drug-book/specific-drug-groups/marijuana
- National Drug Court Institute https://allrise.org/about/division/treatment-court-institute/
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration https://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/reports/rpt32852/Ohio-BH-Barometer_Volume6.pdf
- Wiley Drug and Alcohol Review https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5396143/