How Long Does Marijuana Stay In Your System: Things You Should Know

How long does marijuana stay in your system? That’s not an uncommon question people ask when they use this drug either recreationally or for medical purposes. Marijuana affects your judgment and mind, and the time it stays in your system is important to understand if you need to drive or operate heavy machinery. While many people use this drug for recreational purposes, it’s not recommended.

In addition to asking, "how long does marijuana stay in your system," it’s also important that you understand what it does to your body when it’s in your system. The effects aren’t long-lasting, but it’s easy to detect this drug in your body for weeks after use. Even if you are a first-time user or you did it just a few times, you will find that your body presents evidence of marijuana in your system for weeks. Here’s what you need to know about using marijuana, what it does to your body, and how long it stays in your system.

Effects of Marijuana on the Body

Marijuana is legal in many states now, but that doesn’t mean it’s available for recreational use everywhere you go. Nor is it recommended you use it all the time or in large doses. It’s still a drug, and there are things you need to know about using marijuana. How long does marijuana stay in your system? That’s just the first question you need to ask when you consider using this drug for anything other than medical purposes. Even when you are using this drug medically, you must know how it affects your body.

how long does marijuana stay in your system

1. It Relaxes Your Senses

Many people find that using marijuana can relax them, making it easier to unwind and feel good. One of the most common effects of marijuana on the body is a feeling of relaxation and well-being, which is why many people use it. The effects of minimizing stress and feelings of discontent are a big draw for many users of this drug.

Man Using Marijuana

2. It Heightens Your Senses

People who use marijuana state it makes their senses feel more aware. They’re more in tune with smells and sounds—and even colors seem brighter and more noticeable. This is not necessarily a negative feeling, but it’s still a sense of change that can affect your judgment and your ability to make decisions.

How Long Does Marijuana Stay in Your System

3. It Can Make You Hallucinate

Some people who use marijuana hallucinate, and that is not a good side effect. Even if hallucinations come on without any fear or terror, they’re dangerous. They can cause you to make decisions that aren’t necessary. They can affect your brain when you’re driving, working, or even caring for your children. There is nothing more dangerous than doing anything while you’re hallucinating and unaware of what is really going on around you.


4. It Can Make You Afraid

Some people feel very calm and happy when they use marijuana, and other people feel the opposite. They become panicked, afraid, anxious, and terrified. They are worried. They hallucinate. They don’t enjoy the feeling the drug give them. They don’t feel good about anything that’s going on in their lives, and that makes them feel more nervous than anything else. It also affects their decision-making abilities.

Furthermore, some people also lose their sense of time when they are using marijuana. Everything either slows down or speeds up depending on their reaction to the drug, and that can have an effect on their lives outside of just using the drug at home recreationally or for medicinal purposes.


5. It Helps With Pain

If you use marijuana for medicinal purposes, you will find that the drug helps relieve a significant amount of your pain. You might find you experience less pain in addition to relief from the following:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Stiff muscles and joints
  • Sleep problems
  • Side effects of fibromyalgia and MS
  • Anxiety

This is something that you should consider if your health is in question and your doctor recommends you use cannabis as a medical form of relief from your pain.

Marijuana For Pain

6. It Can Harm Your Body

You’re asking, how long does marijuana stay in your system, but you should be asking how it negatively affects your mind and body over time. Medical research states that long-term use of this drug can cause serious health complications if you are not careful. Using marijuana can cause issues with your memory, your ability to learn, and your attention span. This can last for up to 24 hours after you use the drug, and it can become a permanent problem after regular use.

It can cause lung problems. If you use marijuana regularly, you can cause damage to your lungs. You can develop a regular cough, phlegm you cannot get rid of, and some medical professionals are working on figuring out whether marijuana use leads to asthmatic issues in users, too.

Woman Smoking

If you are pregnant and using marijuana, your baby’s health is at risk. Your baby may develop slowly, be born significantly underweight, or be born prematurely. There isn’t enough information available, yet, about how your marijuana use affects your baby in the long-term, but babies of drug users do spend time in the NICU after birth. Other health issues are not uncommon.

Ways to Test for Marijuana

How long does marijuana stay in your system? Long enough that it can be tested for using a variety of methods. Doctors, medical professionals, employers, and even the police can test your body for marijuana use anytime by using any of the following methods:

  • Urine analysis
  • Hair testing
  • Saliva testing
  • Blood tests
  • Neurological tests

The method used to detect marijuana in your system depends on your situation. Your employer might use one method while another employer uses another. A doctor might test using a different method. There is no right or wrong way to detect whether there is marijuana in your system.

How Long Does Marijuana Stay in Your System?

How long does marijuana stay in your system? There are numerous ways to test for marijuana in the body, and each one has its own ability to find this drug in your system on a different schedule. Some do not detect marijuana for very long, and others can find drugs you used months ago. It all depends on the kind of testing used to find it in your body.

Urine Testing

Urine testing can find marijuana in the body anywhere from three to five days after you use this drug. If you use the drug regularly, it can be detected one to 15 days after use, and anyone with high body fat can carry evidence of the drug in their urine for as many as 30 days.

how long does marijuana stay in your system

Hair Testing

If your hair is tested, it’s possible your drug use can be detected in your body as many as 90 days after use. This is done by using the 1.5 inches of most recent hair growth. If you are someone who keeps your hair short and you don’t have that much hair to test, you will find that your drug use cannot be detected that far back.

Hair Testing

Saliva Testing

This is not the most effective way to test for marijuana. How long does marijuana stay in your system in terms of saliva testing? Only as long as 72 hours, and that’s not easily detectable. Most people need to have their saliva tested within 12 hours of use to get the best results in this type of test.

Saliva Testing

Blood Testing

As long as you use this drug infrequently, it’s only detectable in your blood up to one full day. Those who use marijuana often or heavily will find that it stays in their bloodstream for up to a week. That’s not to say that it’s not detectable a little longer or for less than a week in any user, but that is the average amount of time marijuana can remain in your bloodstream.

Blood Testing

It doesn’t matter when you use marijuana, however. If it’s detectable in any test, that test will not show when you used the drug. There is no way to pinpoint the time or date you used it. The only thing a drug test can show is that you did use it.


If you have a prescription for marijuana use for your medical health, you need not worry about how long it stays in your system. However, you do need to worry if it is not something you’re using for medicinal reasons. If you are drug tested at work, you shouldn't be using drugs for any reason. You never know when a test might occur, and you never know what kind of test you might have to take. Marijuana is a highly addictive drug, and it’s not safe to use unless you have a doctor’s note. If you suffer from marijuana addiction, there is help available to you.

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