How Long Does Meth Stay In Your System?

Kimberly Langdon, M.D.

Medically Reviewed By: Kimberly Langdon, M.D.

on December 9, 2022

Meth stays in your system for about 50 hours on average. Drug testing methods can detect meth use for about 1-5 days after last use, depending on the testing method.

Methamphetamine is a Schedule II controlled substance with one approved medical use. Most forms of meth, such as meth powder and crystal meth, are popular targets of illicit substance abuse.

Drug testing in Ohio can detect illicit meth use as a part of drug addiction treatment programs or a screening from your employer. A positive test result for meth use may warrant a referral to a professional treatment center.

Meth stays in your system for slightly over 2 days. Drug testing methods can detect meth in your body for an average of 5 days after the last use.

Drug Tests & Detections Times For Methamphetamine Use

Drug testing methods can detect methamphetamine and its main metabolites, or components of a drug. Some metabolites have a longer elimination time than the parent drug, and may be indicative of recent substance use.

Amphetamine and para-hydroxymethamphetamine (p-OHMA) are the main metabolites of meth which can be detected by drug tests.

Other over-the-counter and prescription drugs may cause false positives for methamphetamine. Tell your healthcare provider if you are taking methylphenidate, bupropion, or pseudoephedrine before undergoing testing. These substances and others can cause a false positive test.

How Long Does Meth Stay In Your Urine?

Methamphetamine and its metabolites may be present in urine for an average of 3-5 days after the last dose. Higher doses of meth can remain in your urine for up to 7 days.

Urine tests can be a common form of drug testing in Ohio. These tests may be performed as part of a treatment program or a screening by your employer. Attempting to falsify a urine test can result in fines, jail time, or a combination of both.

How Long Does Meth Stay In Your Saliva?

Meth and its metabolites may remain in oral fluid for about 1 day after the last dose.

Saliva tests can be non-invasive and convenient. However, patients may be advised to avoid eating or drinking for a short length of time before the test to maximize accuracy.

How Long Does Meth Stay In Your Blood?

Blood tests may detect meth and its metabolites for about 2 days after the last dose.

Blood tests for drug use may be uncommon in Ohio, and may be reserved for patients who exhibit serious side effects or meth withdrawal symptoms, such as high blood pressure, psychosis, weight loss, tooth decay, meth cravings, and high body temperature.

How Long Does Meth Stay In Your Hair?

Hair follicle tests can detect meth use for over 90 days after the last dose. Many drugs and their metabolites reach the hair through the bloodstream and remain there as the hair grows out.

On average, hair tests have longer detection times compared to other drug testing methods. Consistent hair testing methods are being developed by organizations such as SAMHSA.

Half-Life Of Meth

Half-life is the amount of time it takes for a substance to decrease to half of its maximum concentration after ingestion. After about five half-life cycles, most substances are virtually eliminated from the bloodstream, but may remain in other parts of the body for longer.

The average half-life of meth is about 11 hours. Meth can stay in your bloodstream for about 55 hours on average. The side effects of meth, such as increased heart rate, energy, and irritability, last between 4 to 16 hours.

How long meth stays in the body may depend on factors such as the method and frequency of use, the amount of meth taken, and the patient’s history of drug use.

Treatment Options For Meth Abuse

In recent years, meth overdose numbers have been increasing in Ohio. The habit-forming nature of this drug can cause difficulties when trying to quit.

If you or a loved one are likely to test positive for meth use, you may benefit from a meth addiction treatment program.

Contact Ohio Recovery Center for an inpatient meth addiction treatment program that offers meth detox, behavioral health services, aftercare planning, and other options that could work for you or your loved one.

  1. Addiction — A review of the clinical pharmacology of methamphetamine
  3. ASPET Journals — Interaction and Transport of Methamphetamine and its Primary Metabolites
  4. Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics — The bioavailability of intranasal and smoked methamphetamine
  5. National Institute on Drug Abuse — Methamphetamine DrugFacts
  6. U.S. Pharmacist — Urine Drug Screening: Minimizing False-Positives and False-Negatives to Optimize Patient Care

Written by Ohio Recovery Center Editorial Team

© 2024 Ohio Recovery Center | All Rights Reserved

* This page does not provide medical advice.

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