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How Long Does Marijuana Stay in Your System

Clinically Reviewed by: Dr. Robin Campbell, LMFT, PHD

Are you curious about how long marijuana can linger in your system? Whether you’re a concerned parent, an employer performing drug tests, or someone seeking treatment at New Hope Healthcare Institute in Knoxville, TN, understanding the duration marijuana stays in your body is essential. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve deep into the topic, providing you with a thorough understanding of the factors that influence detection times and the implications of marijuana use.

How Long Does Marijuana Stay in Your System?

Marijuana, also known as cannabis, can stay in your system for varying lengths of time depending on several factors. Let’s explore these factors in greater detail:

1. Frequency of Use:

  • Frequent marijuana users tend to have traces of the drug in their system for more extended periods compared to occasional users.
  • Chronic users may continue to test positive for up to 30 days after their last use, while infrequent users may have a shorter detection window.

2. Method of Consumption:

  • How you consume marijuana significantly impacts how long it stays in your system.
  • Smoking or vaping marijuana leads to quicker absorption, resulting in shorter detection periods compared to edibles or tinctures, which are processed more slowly.

3. Metabolism:

  • Your metabolic rate plays a pivotal role in the elimination of marijuana from your body.
  • Individuals with a faster metabolism generally eliminate marijuana metabolites more rapidly, leading to shorter detection times.

4. Potency:

  • The potency of the marijuana strain you use can affect detection times.
  • High-potency strains with elevated levels of THC may result in longer detection times due to the higher concentration of the psychoactive compound.

5. Body Fat Percentage:

  • THC, the active compound in marijuana, is fat-soluble, meaning it accumulates in fatty tissues.
  • Individuals with higher body fat percentages may retain THC metabolites longer in their bodies, leading to longer detection times.

6. Overall Health:

  • Your overall health, liver function, and hydration levels can influence how quickly your body processes THC.
  • Staying well-hydrated and maintaining a healthy lifestyle can potentially help expedite the elimination process.

Detection Windows:

The duration marijuana stays in your system can vary depending on the type of drug test conducted. Here’s a breakdown of the detection windows for common testing methods:

  • Urine Test: Marijuana is typically detectable in urine for up to 30 days in chronic users, but this window can be significantly shorter for infrequent users.
  • Blood Test: In blood tests, marijuana can be detected for up to a few days after use, with THC levels decreasing rapidly.
  • Saliva Test: Saliva tests can detect marijuana for a period ranging from 1 to 7 days after use.
  • Hair Follicle Test: THC can be detected in hair follicles for up to 90 days or even longer, depending on the length of the hair.

Factors to Consider:

In addition to the aforementioned factors influencing detection times, it’s essential to consider the following aspects:

Legal Implications:

  • Understanding the legal implications of marijuana use in your state is crucial. Laws regarding marijuana use vary widely, with some states permitting medical and/or recreational use while others maintain strict prohibitions.


  • If you’re employed, it’s essential to be aware of your company’s policies regarding drug testing. Many employers conduct pre-employment and random drug tests, and a positive result could impact your job.

Medical Implications:

  • Marijuana use can have both short-term and long-term medical implications. In the short term, it can impair cognitive function, coordination, and judgment. In the long term, heavy use may lead to addiction and mental health issues.

Treatment Options:

  • For individuals struggling with marijuana use or dual diagnosis, seeking professional help and treatment is vital. At New Hope Healthcare Institute in Knoxville, TN, we provide comprehensive support and treatment options for those in need.

Educational Resources:

  • Stay informed about the potential risks and benefits of marijuana use by seeking out reliable educational resources. Understanding the facts can help you make informed decisions.

Call New Hope Healthcare Today!

If you or someone you know is struggling with marijuana use or dual diagnosis, don’t hesitate to reach out to New Hope Healthcare Institute in Knoxville, TN, at 866-806-1027. Our compassionate team is here to help you on your journey to recovery. Check out our blog that we post weekly on Medium.


The duration varies depending on factors such as frequency of use and the type of test, but it can range from a few days to several weeks.

Staying hydrated, exercising, and maintaining a healthy diet may help, but there’s no guaranteed way to hasten the process.

While it’s unlikely, exposure to heavy secondhand smoke in an enclosed space might trigger a positive result in some cases.

No, it’s not safe to drive under the influence of marijuana, as it impairs your coordination and reaction time.

As of my last knowledge update in January 2022, medical marijuana is legal in Tennessee for limited medical conditions, but recreational use remains illegal. Be sure to check for any legal updates since then.

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