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How long does cannabis stay in the body after smoking?

Posted by Be Well

How long does cannabis stay in the body after smoking?
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The length of time that cannabis stays in the body after smoking depends on the person, and how much they use cannabis. It can even vary in that same person from day to day.

Research shows that cannabis is eliminated from the body differently in regular, heavy users than in light, occasional users. People who use cannabis less frequently seem to eliminate the drug more quickly. People who use lots of cannabis on a regular basis store the drug as body fat. This is then released slowly over a long period.

In general, the less cannabis smoked, and the less often it is smoked, the quicker it leaves the body. One-off or occasional users are likely to get rid of all cannabis from their system within a few days. For regular, heavy smokers it takes on average two weeks to one month, although it can be longer. Long term users may still have cannabis in their body two to three months after they last took it.

Health risks

Using cannabis may have a negative effect on your health. Short term effects include:

  • feeling dizzy and sick,
  • dry mouth, lips and tongue,
  • feeling panicky and paranoid (when you are suspicious of people and situations),
  • feeling hungry, and
  • loss of balance and coordination.

If you use cannabis often, you are at risk of developing longer term health problems such as:

There is also some evidence to suggest that long term cannabis users can develop mental health problems including depression and schizophrenia. Cannabis is also addictive; about 10% of users become addicted to it.

Further information:

Drug misuse

Does cannabis interact with antidepressants or lithium?

NOTICE: The information provided on this site is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your physician or other qualified health provider because of something you have read on Wellsphere. If you have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately.
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