Marijuana Drug Testing Myths

Cup of Urine for Drug Test
Photo by By simez78 / Shutterstock

4947751480_256fafb486_o (1)As marijuana becomes legal in more and more states, many employers are turning to drug testing to ensure workplace safety and efficiency. But there are numerous misconceptions surrounding marijuana drug testing. Below are 4 of the most common myths debunked.



Marijuana Stays in Your System for 30 Days

It’s true that delata-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) can linger in your body for an extended period. Unfortunately, there is no fixed time-frame. It’s all dependent on a number of factors, including:

  • body fat
  • diet
  • frequency of marijuana use
  • intake method
  • level of physical activity
  • metabolism
  • strain potency

While THC blood concentrations decrease quickly after you finish smoking marijuana, your organs retain the metabolites longer, usually storing the THC in fat tissues. So if you’re a casual marijuana user blessed with a high metabolism and low body fat, THC should pass through your system fairly quickly. But the more regularly you use and the slower your metabolism, the longer the THC will stick around.

Secondhand Marijuana Smoke Can Cause a Positive Test Result

Passive inhalation can result in trace amounts of THC showing up in your specimen sample; but the levels of concentration are miniscule.

To distinguish actual marijuana use from a contact high, drug tests have established cut-off levels. There’s no way you could inhale enough secondhand smoke to produce a positive test at the 50ng/ml screening cut-off level.

Drinking Lots of Water Will Dilute the Amount of THC in Your Urine

Drinking a liter or more of any liquid is sure to dilute a urine sample within 30-60 minutes of consumption. Sure, you can dilute the levels of THC in your urine with water; but, you’ll also significantly alter creatinine levels, sending a warning to the company testing you.

Every urine sample should contain a determined level of creatinine. If that level is too low, it’s a red flag that the sample is too diluted to provide a valid test result.

You Can Flush Your System with a Home Remedy

There are hundreds of commercial, over-the-counter products that claim to flush your body of THC. There are even more urban legends about household products that will do the same. Some of these products include:

  • Baking soda
  • Cleaning chemicals
  • Cranberry or pickle juice
  • Pectin
  • Vinegar
  • Vitamins B12 and niacin

Most of these items will simply dilute your specimen sample; however, they will not “cleanse” your body of marijuana entirely. In fact, some of these home remedies, such as drinking cleaning chemicals can cause irreparable damage to your body and even result in death.

If you’ve got a drug test looming in your future, don’t be fooled by these misconceptions. Know the facts so you know how to pass.