How long can the authorities detect drug use? It depends. 

On Behalf of | Oct 13, 2020 | Drug Charges |

The impact that a drug has on you may only last for a few hours. For example, many edible marijuana products take about two hours to start working and then simply make you feel high for a few hours after that. It’s longer than alcohol, but it may fade the same day or, if you’re using them in the evening, by the time you wake up the next morning. 

Do not assume that the ability the authorities have to detect the drug in your system is stuck to this same timeframe. You can feel completely fine and still fail a drug test. The police can still use this as evidence. Alcohol metabolizes far faster, but many other drugs, from marijuana to heroin, may show up for days, weeks or even months, depending on the type of test used. 

What influences how long the substances are detectable? It’s different for everyone, but common factors noted by industry professionals include:

  • Your age, weight and body mass
  • Your tolerance and how often you use those drugs
  • How much you took
  • Your personal metabolic rate and your hydration levels
  • Any medical conditions you may have
  • Your gender and your ethnicity
  • Whether or not the drugs were used with other drugs or alcohol
  • The specific type of drug you took and the half-life that it has

The key is just to remember that drugs are still present in your system, no matter how you feel. You must be aware of this fact when facing drug charges if hair or fluid tests are being conducted, and you definitely want to know what legal defense options you have. An experienced advocate can help protect your rights and guide you through the days to come.


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