How Long Is THC Detectable in Your System?

Woman smelling marijuana buds

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the chemical in cannabis that provides the effects commonly associated with marijuana. The use and accessibility of marijuana are growing, but many users still wonder: how long does THC stay in your system?

Hello High Dispensary provides cannabis products, including free delivery, in southern New Jersey. Here, we offer insight into the factors that determine how long THC can remain detectable in a person’s body.

How the Body Processes THC

The body processes THC differently, depending on how the marijuana drug is ingested. While some users still prefer traditional methods, such as smoking the flower of the cannabis plant or using a vaporizer, it can also be used as an ingredient for edibles.

When cannabis is inhaled into the lungs, the compounds quickly enter the bloodstream and travel to the brain and other organs. This causes the effects of THC to onset within seconds or minutes. When cannabis is consumed through food or drink, the compounds must first go through the digestive system and liver before entering the bloodstream, so the effects might not come for a few hours.

How Long Does THC Remain In the Body?

The amount of time THC remains in your system and shows up on drug tests depends on several factors, such as:

THC Dosage and Potency

The amount of THC a person ingests is a significant factor as to how long it remains in their system. The more THC consumed, the longer it takes the body to break down and eventually eliminate it. Additionally, because some forms of marijuana are more potent than others, the strength of each dose of THC also matters.

Frequency of Use

The effects of THC are cumulative. Therefore, frequency of use can affect how long THC remains in a person’s system. The more it’s consumed over a period, the more likely it will remain detectable longer. That’s why frequent users retain THC in their system much longer than occasional users.


A person’s sex at birth can determine how long THC remains detectable in their system. Females typically carry more body fat than males. This causes their bodies to metabolize cannabis slightly more slowly, leading to longer detection rates.

Body Mass

THC is a highly fat-soluble compound, meaning it gets stored in fat cells. Anyone with a higher body fat concentration generally tends to metabolize cannabis more slowly than a person with less body fat.

Hydration Levels

Hydration levels factor into THC detection because dehydration increases concentrations of THC in the body. Although consuming high levels of water and other liquids is unlikely to significantly impact the outcome of drug tests, severe dehydration could.

Metabolism Rate

For THC to no longer be detectable in a person’s system, the body must eliminate it. Users with faster metabolism rates can eliminate THC from their systems much more quickly than those with slower metabolisms.

Does the Type of Drug Test Matter?

Detection times also depend on the type of test administered. Windows of detection vary based on the sample taken.

Saliva Test

There’s significant absorption of THC in the mouth after ingestion. A saliva test is non-invasive and involves rubbing along the inside of the cheek or on the tongue with a sponge or absorbent pad on the end of a stick. Typically, cannabis is detectable in saliva for up to 24 hours.

Urine Test

THC remains detectable for long periods in urine, which is why this method is the standard for drug testing. Urine tests can detect THC for up to 30 days after cannabis use.

Hair Test

Hair tests have the longest detection window of any method of drug testing. THC can be detected for up to 90 days after use with a hair test. However, a hair test is most reliable for daily or near-daily users but is unable to detect light cannabis consumption.

Blood Test

Traces of THC remain in the bloodstream for a short amount of time. Although THC reaches the bloodstream quickly after ingestion, THC concentrations rapidly decrease shortly after. A blood test can detect THC for up to 12 hours.

Discover More About Cannabis and THC Detection

The amount of time THC remains in the body is unique to each person, and several factors contribute. Recreational marijuana users wishing to learn more about how long THC stays in your system and other cannabis-related topics can consult the highly trained staff of bud-tenders at Hello High Dispensary.

In addition to a wide variety of cannabis-infused products, we offer free delivery service throughout the South Jersey area with a minimum $50 purchase. We also aim to educate our customers so that they make the correct choices for their needs. Contact us today at Hello High Dispensary to learn more.


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