How Long Does It Take To Detox From Marijuana?
Learn about what marijuana detox entails, including treatment options and relapse prevention plans here.
Table of Contents
What Is Weed?
Marijuana, known under its more common slang name “weed,” is a psychoactive drug that alters how the brain functions. It is most commonly used for those looking to benefit from the intoxicating effects of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, a cannabinoid responsible for the stimulating and euphoric high. Cannabidiol, or CBD, is another sought-out active cannabinoid in weed that produces a calming effect.
Is Weed Addictive?
Weed has been both recreationally and medically legalized in many states, meaning that its usage is not as heavily restricted as other drugs, such as cocaine and heroin. However, this doesn’t mean that people cannot develop a dependence on the substance. Studies show that as many as 30% of those who use marijuana may have a weed usage disorder in some form or another.1
Dependence is when the body has become so used to a substance that it doesn’t function the same without it anymore. Addiction, also known as substance use disorder, can quickly follow after developing dependence, and marijuana is no exception. According to a nationwide survey, an estimated 14.2 million people aged twelve and older in the United States have a marijuana use disorder.2
What Are the Effects of Marijuana?
The effects of marijuana vary, but many people often use it because it produces a calm or euphoric effect. Other side effects of weed include:
- Increased appetite
- Heightened sensory perception
- Panic or anxiety
How Long Does Marijuana Stay In Your System?
Marijuana impacts everyone differently, meaning that how long weed stays in your system varies as well. For instance, weed may remain in the system longer in those who use it more frequently. Weed generally stays in the system for a relatively long period of time compared to other drugs and can be detected in urine or blood anywhere from one to thirty days after the last usage.
For those who smoke weed daily, this substance can be detectable in the body for several months after the last ingestion. In fact, marijuana can be detected in someone’s hair for up to ninety days.3
How Is a Weed Dependence or Addiction Diagnosed?
It is essential for anyone with or suspected of a weed dependence or addiction to visit a medical specialist or detox center. In order to diagnose a patient with weed addiction, most doctors will conduct a physical and mental medical evaluation. If a medical professional concludes the patient has a dependence, they will begin developing a treatment plan that may include marijuana detox, therapy, and a relapse prevention plan.
How Do Marijuana Drug Tests Work?
The most common type of drug test to detect weed in the body is a urine test, along with blood, saliva, and hair tests. These tests may be conducted during a job interview, although this practice is not as common anymore as weed’s legalization rates continue to rise.
How long does weed stay in urine? As mentioned previously, the duration that weed stays in the system, including urine, depends primarily on the frequency of use. Nonetheless, marijuana generally remains detectable in urine for up to one month after the last dosage. Further, blood tests are only accurate three to four hours after the last usage, while hair tests may continue to detect THC for up to three or four months.4
How to Pass a Marijuana Drug Test
Depending on when marijuana was last consumed and the frequency of use, figuring out how to get weed out of your system changes. However, drinking large amounts of water is recommended to help the body detox itself from the substance as quickly as possible, although this will not help with a hair test if weed was used only a week or two prior.
Marijuana Detox and Withdrawal
Detoxing or withdrawing from marijuana is not as dangerous as detoxing from other substances, such as prescription opioids or cocaine. Regardless, it is still important to be aware of the effects that can occur when you detox from marijuana. Some common marijuana withdrawal symptoms include:
- Decreased appetite
- Mood changes
- Loss of focus
- Potential cravings
Management and Prevention
At first, managing marijuana usage may seem daunting. Still, since weed does not have the same effect on the brain as other addictive substances, it is generally much easier to manage and prevent over-usage. However, if it becomes more difficult to get through the day without using weed, reaching out to supportive family or friends, a detox center, or a doctor can help the process significantly.
Do Detox Remedies Work?
There are many home detox remedies available for withdrawing from marijuana, but it is important to note that detoxing at home, as opposed to a detox center, comes with increased risks. Some home remedies include special THC withdrawal pills and drinks, while others simply require an increased intake of cranberry juice or apple cider vinegar. These may not work for everyone, but they can be beneficial alongside help from a detox center.
Marijuana Detox Treatment
Many options are available for those looking to start marijuana detox treatment, including detox centers, inpatient treatment, and intensive outpatient programs. Inpatient and outpatient programs are incredibly beneficial and are usually recommended depending on the level of treatment needed.
For instance, someone who uses marijuana frequently and has developed a strong dependency or addiction will likely be advised to attend an inpatient program to receive a higher level of support and supervision. Outpatient treatment is generally more recommended for those who have either undergone treatment before or whose dependence on marijuana is not as severe.
Other Therapies for Treatment
Other marijuana addiction or dependence therapies can include:
- Talk therapy
- Support groups