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How Long Do You Need To Be Clean To Pass a Urine Drug Test

Doctor Holding Urine Drug Test

A Urine Drug Test is the most common drug test administered to check whether a person has been using drugs or not. Drug tests are very common in many countries, and pre-employment background checks often include drug tests as well. Additionally, a lot of organizations are also mandated to conduct surprise drug tests every now and then to ensure no employee has been using any illegal substance. Since drugs are primarily illegal, a positive drug test often bears dire consequences. Common drugs like weed still remain utterly illegal in most parts of the world, while other countries or parts of countries allow its usage as long as the user possesses a valid prescription and is only using it as per the instructions to cure some ailment, like glaucoma. Apart from that, all drugs are illegal around the world and users caught are given varying levels of punishment as per local laws on the subject.  

In Australia, for example, if an employee comes positive for drug use, he can be suspended or even terminated for it. With the high stakes that a urine drug test carries, it is essential for people to know how long they need to be clean in order to pass the urine drug test. Apart from the pre-employment drug test, a urine drug test is also commonly administered to sportspersons to ensure that they have not taken any drugs that can enhance performance and give an unfair advantage to them. These tests are also often governmentally mandated to be taken by employers a couple of times a year as a surprise test to ensure no employee is taking drugs. The presence of drugs may also lead to unpleasant legal action depending upon the job you hold. If you, too, are worried about your upcoming pre-employment background check or about an upcoming drug test in your organization, keep on reading to find out what you need to do to get a clean chit from the testers.

How long do drugs remain in your system?

A very common question among people who use drugs or accidentally consume them is how long it takes for your body to flush out the drugs. This is so because most people are curious to know how long they need to be clean to pass a urine drug test or if they need to find a way to tamper with the urine sample submitted. Now there is not a straight answer to this as there are various factors upon which the body’s reaction to drugs and the duration required to flush them out depends. Among the various factors, some of the most common factors which determine how long your system will take to get rid of the toxins found in the drugs completely include:

  • Type of Drug: Some drugs flush out quicker than others out of your system. Certain hard drugs are too complex, and therefore, our bodies require relatively higher time to get rid of them compared to other more simple drugs.
  • Gender: Male and female bodies are very different in composition, and as such, how long the drugs require to be flushed out depends upon the gender of a person as well. 
  • Age: Age obviously plays a vital role in flushing out toxins and drug residue from our systems. As a person ages, their body’s essential systems also slow down. As such, the older a person is, the longer the drugs and toxins will stay in the system.
  • Weight: As with tolerance being dependent on your weight, the time taken to dissolve what you have consumed or taken also depends on your weight. Let’s say there are two people, one weighing 54 kgs and the other weighing 75 kgs. If both of them are exposed to the same amount of drugs, the heavier person will be less at risk of being caught as his body will more readily dissolve the toxins.
  • Dosage: The number of drugs also taken directly impacts the results. The more drugs one takes, the longer it takes to get rid of them as well.
  • Combination of drugs: How long drugs stay in your system also depends on whether they were taken in combination with other drugs or alone. The use of everyday medicines along with drugs is a big no, but if anyone mixes those two categories, that too will impact how long the toxins stay in your body.

Beyond these factors, some drugs also have different impacts and duration of staying in the body in different people based on their ethnicity and health (whether a person is fit, obese, or malnutrition), metabolism, and excretion rates.

As far as the drug test is concerned, different drugs can be detected for different durations in your urine. In general, the time required to pass before you can pass the urine drug test for different drugs is as follows:

  • Marijuana: 7 days
  • Opioids (like heroin): 1-3 days
  • Cocaine and Amphetamines: 2-3 days
  • Other prescription drugs: 4 days to 3 weeks.

If you have any upcoming drug tests that you may be aware of, you must refrain from taking any of these for at least the above-mentioned timeframes. However, the longer you can refrain, the better. A Urine Drug test can detect any of these drugs from the provided sample and must, as such, be appropriately administered. Most of these drugs will appear in your system within 5 to 10 minutes from the time of intake or consumption.

While these estimates are indicative of how long the drugs will stay in your system, as mentioned above, they are dependent on various factors and, as such, can differ from one individual to another. As such, it is essential for individuals to ensure that they leave ample time before a drug test so that the toxins and drugs can adequately flush out and the test can come back negative. Alternatively, if you have been prescribed certain drugs, you must ensure that you inform your employer or whoever orders the urine drug test about the same and present the prescription to them as well.

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