If you’re curious for curiosity’s sake, or, you’re someone who has to undergo regular testing, it’s responsible that you’re here. As long as THC isn’t legal everywhere or not everyone is as accepting of it, we should keep the following in mind. How long does THC stay in your system? This is the important question we’re covering in this post, as well as a bit of the “why.”
Factors that can change the answer
We know. You’re probably not thrilled that there isn’t any singular answer. The fact is: THC can stay in your system for days or even weeks. But, this just goes to show how nuanced our bodies are. Furthermore, how nuanced the relationship between our bodies and THC can be. “How long does THC stay in your system?” can be affected by the following factors.
Frequency of THC use
How often you use THC or various types of THC products can determine how long it stays in your body. As you may expect, it can build up over time, even if you physically feel as though you have a good tolerance to it or are an experienced user.
On the other hand, if you’re an infrequent user, it’s more likely that your body will not be accustomed to it and can remove it more effectively. It can be hard to predict how THC will affect you if you’re new to it, which is why it’s important to start small and consult professionals.
For example, Medical News Today shared this data from a 2017 study:
- For someone smoking marijuana for the first time, tests may detect it for about 3 days.
- In someone who smokes marijuana three or four times per week, the detection window is 5–7 days.
- For people who smoke marijuana once a day or more, tests may detect it in their system for 30 days or longer.
Amount of THC use
The amount of THC you use at any one time can also determine how long it stays in your system. Knowing your limits and starting small are both principles that are important with the use of any substance — no matter how confident you feel or how safe you believe it is. That being said, cannabis can have great benefits for health when used responsibly.
Body fat content
Fat in our bodies can store all kinds of things, and marijuana is one of them. The more body fat you have, the slower your body will metabolize THC. That being said, since women typically have more body fat than men, women are more likely to keep marijuana in their system longer.
The type of test
The type of test used can also determine whether THC will be detected. Some types of tests are simply more sensitive. We discuss more about the different types of tests below. Different types of tests for substances include urine tests (the most common), hair tests, saliva tests, and blood tests.
What to know about types of tests
No matter how “sensitive” a test may seem, you should take all of them as seriously as the last. While there is a standard for every test in terms of how long they can detect THC, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t outliers.
According to this article from American Addiction Centers, THC and marijuana can stay in urine for three days or longer. However, this can also depend on the frequency you use and the amount you used.
Hair tests are the most sensitive of all types of tests. After all, it makes sense, as your hair compiles nutrients from your body and grows over time. Hair tests can detect THC for about 90 days.
Saliva tests, along with blood tests, may surprise you. Saliva tests can typically only detect marijuana for 48 hours.
Blood tests can only detect marijuana for about 36 hours.
When it comes to using THC, we hope you choose to do so responsibly. That applies to every type of THC or cannabis product, including CBD and delta-8-THC, too! Be sure to check out the rest of our blog to learn more about THC.