Aside from not using drugs, what you have to do to pass a drug test can either be really easy, or really difficult. It depends on a lot of different factors. Such as what drugs you’re using and how long you’ve been using them. And how you’ll be tested can make a big difference to your chances. Some tests can detect marijuana usage from several months back. Others are only good for a few days. Read on to find out how to pass a drug test.
When you’re facing a drug test you need to know what works and what doesn’t. There are plenty of products out there that claim to rid your system of THC, but don’t be fooled. There are no miracles out there, but some products do work better than others. Depending on your situation, you can find something that will work long enough to help you pass a test.
Before we get into that, it helps to have some background information on how your body processes and stores marijuana. We’ll also talk about the factors that influence how long it remains detectable. This is important because it will help you decide what detox products to use.
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How Does the Body Deal With Marijuana?
Aside from the obvious high that you get when you use marijuana, it leaves a trail in your body that various drug tests can detect. THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the active ingredient in weed that causes your high. When you smoke, it gets into your bloodstream and is carried to your liver.
Your liver is responsible for breaking down substances and sending the useful bits off to the parts of your body that need them. When it comes to THC, it’s broken down into about 80 different metabolites. One of these metabolites called THC COOH is what drug tests screen for.
Unfortunately this metabolite doesn’t dissolve in water. Instead, it gets stored in your fat cells. Small amounts are also stored in your organs such as your heart, lungs, kidneys and the liver itself. Over time, your fat cells release tiny amounts back into your system. And eventually, it exits your body through your urine and/or faeces.
That’s why it’s so hard to flush THC from your system quickly. Unlike other hard drugs such as cocaine, heroin, opium and LSD, marijuana remains detectable for a long time. Tiny amounts are constantly circulating through your system and the more you use, the more gets stored in your body.
How Long Does It Take for Weed to Leave Your System?
It’s a question that’s frequently asked, but there isn’t a specific answer. As you’ve probably realised, if you’ve been using for some time, it will take longer before you’ll test negative. But even a one-timer user can be at risk, depending on the kind of test used.
Three Factors Apply to All Users
There are three factors that apply to all users universally. Here are some questions you should ask yourself to figure out how much they affect you:
- How strong is the weed I use? Different types of marijuana have different concentrations of THC. If you use one that has very high levels, you’ll have more of the metabolites in your system. And the reverse is that if the concentration is low, you’ll have less.
- How often do I use, and how long have I been using? If you’re just a casual user who smokes the odd joint once or twice a month, you won’t have as much THC is your system as someone who smokes every day. Likewise, long-term users will have built up more metabolites than someone who’s just started using. The combination of frequency and duration will determine how much THC your body stores.
- How do I absorb it? Studies in one-time users have shown that those who smoke marijuana will see their blood levels of THC drop to undetectable levels in about 1 – 3 days. But, if you ingest it, it takes much longer for the blood concentration levels to drop significantly. And users may still test positive after more than 50 hours.
Four Factors Influence THC’s Time in the Body
There are another four factors that influence the time the marijuana stays in your body. These are more personal and differ from person to person. They include the following:
- Metabolism: How quickly your body can break down and flush toxins will depend on your metabolism. Some people have a fast metabolism and may be able to detox in less time.
- Percentage of body fat: Remember that THC is stored in your fat cells. If you have a higher body fat percentage you’re likely to store more of the metabolite. We’re not talking about your weight here, but rather the percentage of fat on your body relevant to your height and weight.
- Drugs and supplements: If you’re using other hard drugs, prescription medications or natural supplements, they may affect your metabolism. Some speed it up while others slow it down.
- Health: If you eat right, exercise, drink enough water and get good sleep, your body will function better. Healthier people tend to have faster metabolisms.
Now that you have all this knowledge, you’ll understand why there isn’t a simple answer to this question. Many factors come into play and everybody is affected differently. How long it will take you to detox depends on your usage and your general state of health. With this information, you should have a better idea whether you’ll be able to detox naturally, or if you’ll need to use something to help you pass your test. Next, you need to understand more about the drug test itself.
How to Pass a Drug Test: How Tests Work
So you already know that drugs tests don’t always look for THC. They’re more interested in the metabolite THC COOH because it stays in your body much longer. So your blood is tested for the concentration of the metabolite, which is expressed in nanograms per millilitre (ng/ml).
Most tests have a cut-off point of 20 – 50ng/ml. Any result higher than the cut-off will be sent for further testing. But some tests are more sensitive than others, and some are better at detecting recent use while others can detect historical use. Two of the most common tests are urine and saliva. They’re both inexpensive and fairly easy to administer. Hair testing isn’t used as often because it’s more expensive, but it’s one of the most accurate. These are the basics you need to know about each test:
Hopefully, you’ll get some advance warning about your urine test. This will give you time to prepare. Metabolites from marijuana can show up in your urine within 1 – 3 hours of using. Below are some estimates on how long it may take to pass your test:
- One-time user: 1 – 6 days
- Regular user: 7 – 14 days
- Heavy user: 1 – 3 months
These times are just a guide and can vary according to the factors mentioned earlier. If you’re an infrequent user, with natural detox methods you’ll stand a good chance of passing. But heavy users will have to resort to other methods to help them pass.
How to Pass a Urine Test
A urine test can be one of the easiest tests to pass if you know your stuff. You might need just one method or a combination of things to ensure you test negative. These are some of the options you have when planning your strategy:
- Natural detox program: There are some simple things you can do to help your body flush the THC out faster. Drink more water or any fluid for that matter, and get your kidneys working. The more you pee, the more THC you eliminate. Eat lots of fruit and vegetables to give your body the antioxidants it needs to destroy the toxins. And the added fibre will help to move things along. Get some exercise. Burning fat means more THC will be released back into your system where you can finally flush it out for good. But don’t exercise just before your test. This will cause a temporary rise in your THC levels which could take you above the threshold. Get enough sleep: Sleep helps your body recover and is important for your general health. Remember, the healthier you are, the better your metabolism works.
- Toxin Rid: Designed for heavy users, the 10 Day Detox programme can help you to lower THC levels dramatically within days. It consists of pre-rid tablets, dietary fibre and detox liquid. It does work, but only if you follow the instructions to the letter.
- Same-day detox drink: These only work at masking the THC in your system. If you can’t detox completely in time for your test, this could be an option for you. They take about an hour to work, after which your sample should test negative for 2 – 3 hours. For this to work you need to know exactly when you’ll be taking your test.
- Synthetic urine: This is really a last resort. If you haven’t had time to detox and you don’t think a same-day detox drink will cut it, then you might have to get some fake pee. There are some good products out there that really do work, but you need to do your homework.
You could also try drinking as much water as possible to dilute your urine, but we wouldn’t recommend this. Labs can test to determine whether a sample has been heavily diluted and may send it for further testing. This is definitely not what you want. If you are tempted to try it, take some b-vitamins to add more yellow colour to your urine. And take creatine at least two days before your test. Diluting your urine results in low levels of creatine which will ring alarm bells at the lab.
Also known as a mouth swab, oral test or spit drug test, a saliva test can be music to a marijuana user’s ears. The reason for this is that it is the hands-down the simplest test to pass. Hardly any THC is excreted in your saliva, so it’s pretty hard for this test to pick anything up.
If you’re a light user, you should be able to pass a saliva test within 12 hours of your last smoke. You might need about 3 – 4 days to test negative. Apart from the usual detoxing that will help flush the THC from your system, there are other things you can do; so there’s really no need for you to worry about this test.
But saliva tests are very good at detecting recent marijuana use. Within just 2 – 3 hours the metabolites will start to show up in your saliva. So if you’ve smoked just a few hours before a test, you probably won’t pass. Unless you take some steps to prepare for these kinds of situations.
A hair test is definitely one of the most difficult tests to beat. Unlike the fatty cells in your body which release metabolites back into your body, your hair follicles literally trap toxins inside them. And these toxins stay in your hair as it grows out.
Even though only 1.5 inches of the freshest growth is used for the test, it can detect evidence of drug use up to three months prior. It’s also a very sensitive test. While most tests have a threshold of 20 – 50ng/ml, hair tests can pick up as little as 1ng/ml.
Natural detox plans and even formulated detox tablets will not be able to help you here. And shaving off all your hair might only make people suspicious. Even washing your hair twice a day for a couple of months will have no effect. The only thing you can do is get a specially formulated shampoo that gets right down into the hair shaft and removes the toxins.
There are many ways to pass a drug test. Success depends on your usage, lifestyle and products you use. If you have the time, doing things to help your body’s natural detoxification process is always a good idea. This is one of the most reliable ways to ensure that you test clean. But if that isn’t an option, then are plenty of products that can help you when you need it most. Just remember to use one that’s been proven to work.