How Long Does It Take to Detox From Marijuana?

While casual use of marijuana is popular, it does have the potential to become addictive. For some, marijuana detox may be needed.

Table of Contents

What is Weed?

Weed, or marijuana, is the dried leaves and flowers of the cannabis plant. These parts of the plant contain a psychoactive chemical known as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is what produces a high when someone smokes weed. THC can also be separated from the dry plant and turned into concentrates, edibles, and topical products.1
Marijuana Detox

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Is Weed Addictive?

For some, weed has the potential to be addictive. Approximately 30% of people who use weed have marijuana use disorder or dependence.2
Someone who is dependent on weed will experience withdrawal symptoms when cutting back or quitting. Withdrawal symptoms of marijuana detox include mood changes, irritability, sleep difficulty, decreased appetite, and cravings. When someone is addicted to marijuana, their use affects their quality of life. Marijuana detox can sometimes be necessary for those with a marijuana use disorder.

What Are the Effects of Marijuana?

Marijuana’s effects can be felt almost instantly after smoking. Most people experience pleasant sensations, such as relaxation and euphoria. For some, marijuana can have a stimulating effect. Some individuals report heightened senses, an altered sense of time, and an increase in appetite.

However, not everyone reacts to marijuana in the same way. For some individuals, using marijuana can lead to feelings of fear, anxiety, and panic. Marijuana use can also cause feelings of paranoia and delusion.

How Long Does Marijuana Stay In Your System?

While the effects of marijuana wear off within a few hours after smoking, THC can remain in the body for up to several weeks. This is because THC is stored in the body’s fat reserves and takes time to detox completely.3

People who are habitual users or have a long history of use will need more time to detox completely. Symptoms of marijuana detox begin within 24 hours of the last use. Marijuana detox can be uncomfortable and is best managed by a medical health professional.4

Medical Evaluation

Before treatment is discussed, an evaluation is done to learn more about you and your history with weed. Screenings for other mental and physical disorders are done at this time as well. This allows providers to better get to know your needs, which is beneficial in the creation of a treatment plan.

Detoxification

Symptoms of detox can vary in severity. To help with minimizing detox symptoms, it is recommended to taper off use gradually. While mild withdrawal symptoms can be managed at home, individuals with severe dependence will benefit best from a marijuana detox program. These programs allow for detox symptoms to be managed by a healthcare professional.

Treatment

Marijuana detox is not a substitute for treatment of marijuana dependence. After detoxing, it is important to work with a healthcare provider to determine the next steps in treatment. For marijuana dependence, there are many levels of care. Therapy and inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation are all options for marijuana addiction treatment.

Relapse Prevention

After marijuana detox and treatment, it is important to remain proactive in preventing relapse. Support groups can help prevent relapse by providing community and accountability. Relapse prevention may also include cutting off people and activities that may trigger a relapse.

How Do Marijuana Drug Tests Work?

Drug tests for marijuana detect THC in the body. Urine, hair, blood, and saliva can all be used to test for THC. In urine, THC can be detected anywhere from 3-30 days after the last use, while saliva tests have a slightly smaller detection window of 24-72 hours from the last use.
Blood tests have the smallest detection window of only 3-4 hours. Hair is less commonly tested, but it has a detection window of 90 days, making it the longest.

How To Pass A Marijuana Drug Test

Drug tests, including those for marijuana, can be necessary for getting a job. Many drug store products promise a rapid detox. However, they are mostly ineffective and can be potentially dangerous.

Because THC is stored in fat cells, it takes longer than other drugs to be broken down and eliminated from the body. Working out and downing water won’t guarantee a negative test, but it can help eliminate THC in the body by speeding up your metabolism.

Marijuana Detox and Withdrawal: What to Expect

Marijuana detox symptoms can be uncomfortable, lasting anywhere from 24 hours to a week in total. Familiarizing yourself with the symptoms of marijuana detox can help prepare you for a detox program and also be helpful for knowing when to get outside help.

Marijuana Withdrawal Symptoms

Not everyone who uses marijuana will experience withdrawal symptoms when detoxing. However, for those with marijuana addiction and dependence, common withdrawal symptoms include anxiety, restlessness, irritability, decreased appetite, and changes to sleeping patterns. Those with severe cases of marijuana addiction and dependence may experience sweating, shakiness, elevated heart rate, nausea, vomiting, gut pain, and diarrhea during withdrawal.5

Management & Prevention

Depending on the severity, marijuana detox can be managed at home through the use of over-the-counter drugs. For those needing more support, medically managed marijuana detox may be necessary. Medically managed detox often includes the use of prescription medication to address severe withdrawal symptoms.

With proper planning, withdrawal symptoms can be minimized. Tapering off marijuana slowly can help reduce the intensity of withdrawal symptoms. It is helpful to work with your doctor to come up with a plan to safely taper off marijuana to prevent severe withdrawal.

Do Detox Remedies Work?

Detox remedies are available, but they are not regulated by the FDA. These detox remedies have not been tested for safety or effectiveness, so their claims aren’t backed by science. Taking herbal supplements, overhydrating, or taking diuretics will also not work to remove THC from your system, despite their popularity.

Risks Of Detoxing on Your Own

While you can detox at home, there are some risks. Detox is uncomfortable, and symptoms of abdominal pain and nausea can be intense, making them difficult to manage by yourself. Detoxing from home can also leave you without a treatment plan, making recovery difficult.
Marijuana Detox

Marijuana Detox Treatment & Medications

If you are struggling with a marijuana addiction, know there is help available. A marijuana detox program is a great first step. These programs can help you get through the initial part of detox through the use of prescription medication.
Also, working with a detox program will help you decide the level of care that you need for addiction treatment. Detox centers, inpatient rehab, outpatient programs, and therapy are all options for the treatment of marijuana addiction.

Detoxification Center

For those with a severe marijuana addiction, it is best to undergo detox at a detox center. Detox centers are often the first step in recovery from addiction. At these centers, a medical professional supervises detox, prioritizing your comfort and safety. The detox timeline for marijuana looks different for everyone, meaning your length of stay at a detox center can vary as well.

Inpatient Rehabilitation Center

After detox, there are a few options for addiction treatment. For those who want more support after detox, inpatient rehabilitation centers are an excellent choice. These programs are designed to help you not only quit drugs but also create new healthy habits to help you maintain sobriety in the long run. Inpatient rehab centers also focus on building real-life skills to better your success.

Intensive Outpatient Programs

Inpatient rehabilitation isn’t always appropriate for everyone. For those who can’t or do not need inpatient services, outpatient programs are a good option. Outpatient programs allow you to go home after regular meetings with a substance abuse therapist. Group therapy and homework are also often key components of these types of programs.

Therapies for Addiction

Behavioral therapy is an effective treatment for marijuana addiction. Therapy can help you identify unhelpful or harmful patterns and gives you the tools to change them, thereby allowing you to take control of your mental health. Some therapies for marijuana addiction include cognitive behavioral therapy, contingency management, and motivational therapy.

Marijuana Detox at Profound

The first step in the recovery process is often detox. At Profound Treatment, we are here to support you through detox and transition to further treatment. Our medical staff offers 24/7 support during withdrawal and detox to ensure your safety and comfort. We also offer both residential rehabilitation and outpatient services to help you stay on track after detox. Call us today and experience the Profound difference.

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