While marijuana is now becoming more and more accepted across the world thanks to the many benefits it has been shown to offer, there are still places where cannabis consumption is frowned upon.
There are different employers and organisations which still drug test their employees, and if it is shown up that you have the likes of cannabis in your system, there are severe consequences in store for you. Therefore, many people who are in a position where they are drug tested but still want to consume marijuana want to know the details associated with how long it is going to stay in their system.
By having this information at hand, you will be able to tailor your consumption of cannabis around the periods in which you are going to have these drug tests. Of course, it becomes a lot trickier if you are subjected to drug tests on a random basis, rather than having scheduled ones. Unfortunately, for frequent consumers of cannabis, evidence suggests that it stays in your system for many weeks usually. There are different variables which determine just how long this period of time is going to be.
What does marijuana do to your system?
The main active ingredient that is present in marijuana is THC. This is the psychoactive compound which gives people the high usually associated with consuming marijuana. When you consume marijuana, it will rapidly enter into your bloodstream after smoking it.
If you are consuming it in an edible form, it will be absorbed anywhere from 20 minutes all of the way up to a couple of hours. There are numerous effects that marijuana consumption provides to a person. Everybody reacts differently, but there are some common effects that are seen again and again. There are effects in the short run which affect the likes of your problem solving, memory coordination and learning, usually lasting in the range of one or two hours.
Sometimes there will be side effects that stay around for as long as a day. THC will be detected within your blood for a number of hours, but it will shortly be broken up and changed into metabolites. These metabolites will then be kept in storage in the fat pockets throughout the body and, over time, they will be excreted from the body through urine and faeces.
Drugs tests and detection of marijuana
Usually, when a drug test is focused on the likes of marijuana, they will not utilize blood tests because signs of cannabis consumption only show up in the short time period after the person has consumed it.
This is why the likes of saliva and blood tests are used to show what the current levels of intoxication may be in a person who has been involved in a car accident, for example. The more effective test that is used to identify if a person has been consuming marijuana in the recent past is a urine test. This tries to identify the levels of cannabis metabolites in your urine.
A lot of employers utilize these types of tests as they have zero tolerance policies when it comes to their employees using drugs. While certain THC metabolites are going to be eliminated from the body within the first 20 hours following consumption, there are certain metabolites which are stored in fat throughout the body, which can remain here for between 10 and 13 days. It usually takes another five or six days for it to be fully out of the body. Generally, those people who have used marijuana in a one off situation are not going to have a positive test for marijuana in the five to eight day period after consumption.
A lot of researchers seem to agree that marijuana is going to be present in a drug test for as long as 13 days after consumption. But there is also research which showcases that the duration of time that it stays in your body depends on how often you consume cannabis and what sort of doses you are consuming.
People who consume cannabis on a regular basis can show up positive in urine tests up to 45 days after consumption. Heavy users of cannabis can have traces in their urine up to 90 days after last consuming cannabis. These are certainly long periods of time and therefore if you are getting regularly urine tested for the likes of marijuana, cannabis use can be problematic.
Are urine tests accurate?
While all tests are going to have some sort of flaws, it is not very common for there to be a false positive when it comes to marijuana tests. There is a specialized process used to test the samples, and it is usually extremely accurate in its results. There was a time in the past when certain types of ibuprofen could lead to false positive tests, but the tests have been adjusted since then to account for this possibility.
There are people who think that there are different ways in which they might be able to fool a urine test for the presence of marijuana. Most of them appear to be myths which do not work. One of the most common theories is that you are able to dilute the metabolites in your system and flush everything out in advance of the test.
This would involve the consumption of a lot of liquids and urinating multiples times in advance of taking the actual drug test. Individuals usually pair this with the consumption of B12 vitamins, as this will put some colour back into the urine so as to not make the testers suspicious.
While this system may lead to the proportion of THC in the urine being lessened, it is not really able to completely get rid of these metabolites from your urine or system as a whole. There are certain companies which sell so-called detox pills and drinks which are said to have a similar effect and flush out the system, but nothing concrete has ever been proven to be reliable with these tests