How long a drug stays in your system depends on many factors, such as the dose, your weight, your sex and your physical health. Most drugs stay in the body for at least a few days and can be detected on a urine test for 3-7 days. But just because the drug leaves the body does not mean you’re sober. You’ll go through withdrawal and detox before starting a formal treatment program.

Newport Beach drug addiction treatment is a critical part of the recovery process. It involves working with a therapist to understand the reasons that led to the abuse, medications for co-occurring conditions, educational tools to help you stay sober and more. Getting drugs and alcohol out of your system is the first step – but recovery is ongoing.

To help you understand how long drugs stay in the body, we’re going to break down the factors that impact how long a drug can be detected and the basic timelines for each drug.

Factors that Impact How Long Drugs Stay in the Body

Two people can take the exact same drugs in the exact same doses and experience very different effects. This happens because each body is unique. So, how long a drug stays in your body depends on your unique body composition. Let’s explore.

  • Metabolism. Your metabolism refers to how efficiently your kidney and liver metabolize drugs. The more efficient the system, the sooner the drugs are eliminated.
  • Age. Generally speaking, the older you are, the less efficient your body is. You can expect drugs to linger longer in an older body.
  • Tolerance. Long-time users are more likely to have drugs show up in their body because of the increased tolerance.
  • Body fat percentage. Women tend to have more body fat than men, which causes them to hold onto certain drugs (i.e., THC) for a longer period of time.
  • Drug type. The type of drug, its purity and how it was used also contribute to how long it stays in the body.

Average Times Drugs Stay in the Body

Below is a handy chart that tells you how long drugs stay present in the urine and blood. Keep in mind that these are rough estimates and meant to be used as a guide only.

Drug Type Present in Urine Present in Blood
Alcohol 3-5 days 10-12 hours
Amphetamines 1-3 days 12 hours
Barbiturates 2-4 days 1-2 days
Benzodiazepines 3-6 weeks 2-3 days
Cannabis 7-30 days Up to 2 weeks
Cocaine 3-4 days 1-2 days
Fentanyl 1-3 days Up to 48 hours
Heroin 3-4 days Up to 12 hours
LSD 1-3 days 2-3 hours
MDMA 3-4 days 1-2 days
Methamphetamine 3-6 days 24-72 hours
Methadone 3-4 days 24-36 hours
Morphine 2-3 days 6-8 hours

What Happens When Drugs Leave the Body?

Drugs leave the body in many different ways, such as through sweat, breathing and the kidneys. Most drugs will need to be metabolized first before they can leave the body.

When your body suddenly stops or reduces its intake of drugs, you will experience withdrawal symptoms, which can vary greatly depending on the substance you’re using and how long you’ve been using. The body needs time to adjust to this sudden absence.

For example, opioids like fentanyl and heroin act on a neurotransmitter called dopamine. When there’s a rush of dopamine, the body feels extreme levels of happiness and euphoria. However, over time, the brain stops making its own dopamine and comes to rely on opioids for feelings of pleasure.

The recovery process starts with a detox center in Newport Beach. During this phase, the drugs and alcohol are eliminated from the body and you’ll go through withdrawal. Most people are able to complete detox in about 10 days or so before moving onto therapy. Even though you may not be physically dependent on drugs following detox, you will still be psychologically dependent.

When Will You Feel Like Normal Again?

Your brain and body need time to heal. Some people assume that once they complete detox, they’re in the clear, but this isn’t the case. To prepare yourself for this journey, it’s important to develop realistic expectations (recovery is a journey, not a destination) and practice excellent self-care.

Here are some of the things you can do to repair your brain and body in recovery:

  • Eat a healthy, nutritious diet
  • Drink plenty of fluids
  • Exercise for 30 minutes daily
  • Participate in talk therapy
  • Practice mindfulness and meditation
  • Discover new or existing passions

Typically, most drugs leave the body within a couple of days from their use. If you are dependent on drugs or alcohol, you’ll experience a withdrawal period when the drug use stops or decreases. This is one of the hardest parts of the recovery process, so we highly recommend aligning yourself with a medical detox center that can watch over you. There are various therapies and medications that can ease withdrawal symptoms and make detox more pleasant.

Start Detox and Treatment in Newport Beach CA

Once detox is complete, you can move onto the foundation of recovery: therapy. Get in touch with our luxury drug rehab in Newport Beach to learn more about our programs. You can receive all of your treatment under one roof in a comfortable, luxury rehab facility that’s just minutes from the beach.