How Long Does Methamphetamine (Meth) Stay in Your System?

  1. How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay In Your System?
  2. Testing and How Long Methamphetamine Stays Your System
  3. The Stages Of A Meth High
  4. Factors For How Long Detection Time Lasts
  5. How Is Meth Metabolized?
  6. How Does Meth Affect Your Health?
  7. How Do You Treat Methamphetamine Abuse?
  8. Get Information About Treatment and Tests
  9. How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your System? — Bedrock
  10. How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in the Body?
  11. How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your Urine?
  12. How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your Hair?
  13. How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your Blood?
  14. How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your Saliva?
  15. Factors That Affect How Long Methamphetamine Will Stay in Your System
  16. Physical Factors
  17. Mental Factors
  18. Methamphetamine Use Specifics
  19. Treatment for Methamphetamine Addiction
  20. Sources
  21. How Long Meth Stays in Your System: Urine, Hair, Blood, Etc
  22. What is Meth?
  23. Effects of Meth
  24. The Rush
  25. The High
  26. The Crash
  27. Mental Health Risks
  28. Meth Addiction
  29. Meth Withdrawal
  30. Meth Overdose
  31. How Long Does Meth Last?
  32. Half-Life of Meth
  33. Drug Testing for Meth
  34. How Long Does Meth Stay in Your Urine?
  35. How Long Does Meth Stay in Your Blood?
  36. How Long Does Meth Stay in Your Saliva?
  37. How Long Does Meth Stay in Your Hair?
  38. How Long Does Meth Stay In Your Body?
  39. Meth Rehab Options
  40. What's Next?
  41. How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your System?
  42. How Long Will Meth Show Up on A Drug Test?
  43. How Long Does Crystal Meth Stay in Your System?
  44. How Long to Get Methamphetamine Your System?
  45. How Does Your Body Metabolize Methamphetamine: Meth Half-Life
  46. Get Help for Methamphetamine Addiction at North Star Treatment Services
  47. Source:

How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay In Your System?

How Long Does Methamphetamine (Meth) Stay in Your System?

Methamphetamine abuse can lead to binges which last several days. Abuse of meth, especially prolonged abuse, can be damaging to a person’s health. Binges can result in irritability, paranoia, and even psychosis.

Methamphetamine, commonly called meth, produces an instant, though short-lived, rush feeling for those who take it. It’s the reason many seek the drug. But because the rush wears off quickly, many people seek meth again and again.

Drugs that produce an initial rush followed by a high (feeling of intense euphoria and increased activity) tend to be highly addictive. Meth is no exception. Yet the stages of meth abuse can be dangerous, especially for those who continually abuse the drug.

It may be helpful to know how long methamphetamine stays in your system if you believe someone you know is abusing the drug. Meth abuse leads to a number of risks, including dissociation of the mind and high risk of self-harm or harm to others (at worst). Treatment is the safest way to ensure those abusing meth find help to quit the use of it.

Testing and How Long Methamphetamine Stays Your System

Research conducted on how long meth stays in the body often involves the blood-to-plasma ratio. This measures the amount of meth in the whole blood. Other measurements may examine only how much meth is in plasma, which can be misleading if concentrations of the drug differ between red blood cells and plasma.

Measures of meth in your system work this, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA):

  • Peak blood methamphetamine concentrations:
    • A few minutes after smoking or injecting
    • Around 3 hours after taking orally
  • Peak amphetamine concentrations (after broken down from methamphetamine):
  • Elimination half-life (time to meth concentration cut in half):
    • Mean measure is 10.1 hours
    • Range of 6.4 to 15 hours

For each dose of meth, it takes anywhere from two to 10 days to leave the body. This number can change though, depending on usage; the more meth abused, the longer it takes to leave the body.

The short-term side effects experienced can last up to 24 hours, but with binges, this can change. Detection of meth in drug tests is confirmed usually within one to four days after use, but can be confirmed up to a week after heavy use, according to the NHTSA.

The Stages Of A Meth High

  • Initial rush:
    • When a person abuses meth, he or she first experiences the rush, or the initial surge of euphoria. This feeling lasts from a few minutes up to 30 minutes.
    • During that time, the person’s heart rate increases and other systems in the body escalate, including blood pressure, pulse, and metabolism.
  • High:
    • After the rush comes the high. According to, “during the high the abuser often feels aggressively smarter and becomes argumentative, often interrupting other people and finishing their sentences.” This stage is often characterized by delusions.
    • Delusions lead the person to focus solely on one small thing; the person may place high importance on small tasks, repetitive motions (stroking something or wiping a surface). The high can last from four to 16 hours.
  • Binge:
    • People affected by meth abuse may take several doses in a row to ensure a string of continuous highs. This process, known as a binge, results in hyperactivity. When a person abusing meth goes on a binge, he or she can go for days without sleep or food.
    • Binges can last three to up to 15 days, according to the Center for Abuse Substance Research (CESAR). The purpose of the binge is to continue the high and re-experience the rush. But each time a person injects or smokes meth, the rush is less potent, the high less effective, until neither is experienced at all.
  • Tweaking:
    • It is during the binge that a person abusing meth experiences the most dangerous stage of meth abuse: tweaking. After lack of sleep and food for days, and with a constant stream of meth in the system, a person becomes paranoid and irritable.
    • Though this stage is plagued by intense craving for the rush and high, the person ly can’t get the desired effects because he or she has developed tolerance.
    • Tweaking presents danger because it may result in violence which can lead to domestic disputes or criminal acts, or even car accidents.
    • Tweaking is characterized by: eyes moving extremely fast, quivering voice, jerky movements.

Factors For How Long Detection Time Lasts

Because many people who abuse meth engage in a binge, it is important to know how long meth stays in your system.

A few things affect the duration of meth in the body, and include:

  • Method of administration: smoked, injected, or swallowed. Smoking or injecting results in quick onset; taking orally results in slower onset.
  • How many doses have been taken
  • How long it has been since last dose
  • How well it is metabolized: the state of your liver and kidneys

How Is Meth Metabolized?

The body immediately begins to metabolize meth, first breaking it down partly to amphetamine. Within a few hours, the body continues to break down the methamphetamine and amphetamine left in the bloodstream.

The liver and kidneys do their work filtering out the chemicals of meth, as does urination. In fact, as much as 30 to 54 percent of meth can leave the body through urine as “unchanged methamphetamine” and 10 to 23 percent as “unchanged amphetamine,” according to the NHTSA. The majority of meth leaves the body without metabolizing at all.

How Does Meth Affect Your Health?

In addition to being highly addictive, meth can cause damaging effects to your health. Psychological dependence can result because the rush effects are desirable: excitement, high energy, talkativeness. People who abuse meth may associate this time with increased abilities to perform or achieve tasks (part of the delusions they experience).

But taking high doses or prolonged abuse can lead to less desirable effects to your health. For example, chronic use can lead to: irritability, nervousness, paranoia, violent behavior and extreme depression. All of these symptoms can contribute to increased lihood of self-harm or harm of others. Left untreated, prolonged meth abuse can trigger psychosis similar to schizophrenia.

Adverse health effects associated with long-term abuse may include:

  • Meth mouth: tooth decay, cracked teeth, and gum disease
  • Brain damage
  • Breakdown of immune system
  • Skin lesions (sores)
  • High blood pressure
  • Extreme weight loss
  • Malnutrition
  • Stroke
  • Heart problems
  • Lung disease
  • Kidney or liver damage
  • Overdose and death

How Do You Treat Methamphetamine Abuse?

Treatment for meth first involves detoxification (detox). This first necessary step allows chemicals acquired during abuse to leave the body. This process can be dangerous when performed alone. Inpatient rehab centers can provide the medical and professional support necessary to get through it.

After being assessed, you’ll get treatment for meth abuse and any co-occurring substance abuse disorders or mental health disorders. Meth abuse may be coupled with alcohol abuse or abuse of other depressants, and can be characterized by anxiety, depression, or psychosis. It is important to recognize and treat all co-occurring disorders to ensure the best chance at recovery.

Inpatient rehab centers can provide the mental and emotional support you’ll lack in outpatient treatment. Evidence-based treatment options and licensed medical staff make treatment in a rehab center the quality experience it should be—a chance to rebuild a life without meth.

Get Information About Treatment and Tests

When people we know are in the grips of addiction, it can be frightening. Methamphetamine binges can last for days, and if someone you know is experiencing this, you may not know what to do next.

We can help get your loved one into meth treatment and find a recovery plan that works. Contact us today at Vertava Health to learn more about treating meth addiction and the rehab center difference.


How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your System? — Bedrock

How Long Does Methamphetamine (Meth) Stay in Your System?

Methamphetamine has devastated entire regions of the country. Although the opioid crisis has taken more attention in the media lately, meth use is still widespread. Meth is a fast-acting drug, but it stays in your body longer than you might think.

How long meth will stay in your system depends on a few things, including:

  • Whether you have been using other drugs
  • How mentally and physically healthy you are
  • Your history with meth abuse

If you’re wondering about how long it will be detectable by a drug screening, then you also need to consider what kind of drug test you are taking.

How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in the Body?

Once taken, meth hits fast. Within seconds of injecting or smoking it, users often feel an initial ‘rush’ as dopamine floods their brain. Next, the ‘high’ of meth can last for 4-14 hours

Short-term effects of meth may include:

  • Increased attention
  • Increased activity
  • Euphoria
  • Decreased appetite
  • A faster rate of breathing
  • Fast heartbeat

However, once these body and brain effects wear off, that does not mean that meth is your system. In fact, the period when users are ‘high’ is just the beginning of meth’s time in their system.

How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your Urine?

Methamphetamine can stay in your urine for up to four days. This means that if you take a lab test for drugs and it uses a urine sample, you will need to have been sober for at least 4 full days to ensure that you test negative for meth.

Urine tests are, by far, the most common type of tests found in workplaces. They are cheap, effective, and they have a fairly long detection window. Plus, they do not require invasive methods to get a testing sample. 

How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your Hair?

Hair testing makes it nearly impossible for users of meth to try and plan their use around drug tests, or to detox meth quickly after use to avoid a positive test result. Hair testing has been known to find traces of meth for up to six months after the last time taken.

The downsides of hair sampling are that it is more invasive than urine testing (requires a hair to be plucked from the body or head), and it is more expensive. Plus, hair testing is known to be less accurate than other forms of testing. 

Still, there is no way to ensure that a test will not be taken via hair – and if you have used meth any time in the past 6 months, you could test positive!

How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your Blood?

Meth has an average half-life of around 11 hours in the blood. This means that it takes about 11 hours for half the meth to leave your bloodstream. But a drug’s time in the blood is not simply two half-lives.

In fact, a blood test can detect meth for one to four days after the last dosage. Blood tests require a blood sample, so they are more invasive than other tests. They are fairly expensive and have a shorter detection window than urine tests.

The benefit of blood testing is that it is highly accurate. Very few false positives or negatives are produced via blood testing. For this reason, these tests are most common in legal settings, as well as law enforcement contexts.

How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your Saliva?

In order to conduct a saliva test, a simple cotton swab from the inside of the cheek is all that is needed. 

This testing method is known to find traces of meth for one to four days after the last use. It is important to remember that this is not the same for everyone, and the test might detect the drug for a shorter or longer period of time, depending on other factors.

Saliva testing is easy to do and is non-invasive, urine testing. Because this test can be administered in public, it is commonly used by police officers in the field. However, these tests are more expensive and less accurate than urine tests so, they are less common in the workplace.

Factors That Affect How Long Methamphetamine Will Stay in Your System

The method of drug testing for meth is important to consider in some cases, but how long it lasts in your system is affected by many more factors. These factors should always be taken into account when trying to determine how long meth will stay in your body:

Physical Factors

You can’t speed up the process of detoxing from meth. Your body takes time to process the drug. That said, the amount of time this will take may depend on several things, including:

  • Age
  • Genetics
  • Metabolism
  • Weight
  • Gender
  • Health

Many systems in your body must coordinate in order to process meth. In particular, the liver and kidneys play a key role. Without proper function of these organs, meth will get backed up in the system and take longer to leave.

Mental Factors

Physical well-being is not the only thing that can affect meth’s time in the body. Mental illnesses that are commonly present in meth users, such as anxiety and depression, can slow down processing times as well.

Methamphetamine Use Specifics

Perhaps the most important variable is how the meth was used. With heavy, prolonged use, meth builds up in the body and can take longer to remove. These factors can affect this timeframe:

  • Frequency of use
  • Duration of use
  • How it was taken (smoked, injected)
  • Presence of other drug or alcohol abuse
  • Dosage

In general, the heavier the meth abuse, the longer it will take to detox. Furthermore, a person who has been using heavily is unly to be in good mental or physical health, which will only prolong the process even more. 

Treatment for Methamphetamine Addiction

Meth abuse is never to be taken lightly. If you or anyone you know has been using this dangerous substance, call Bedrock Recovery Center today to get treatment for meth addiction.



How Long Meth Stays in Your System: Urine, Hair, Blood, Etc

How Long Does Methamphetamine (Meth) Stay in Your System?

Methamphetamine stays in your system for approximately:

Urine:1-10 days
Blood:1-3 days
Saliva:1-4 days
Hair:Up to 90 days

The amount of time that meth stays in your system depends on the dose ingested, frequency of use, and your body’s ability to process it.

What is Meth?

Methamphetamine is the second most popular illicit drug in the world, after marijuana. It is commonly sold under the street names meth, crank, crystal, crystal meth, glass, ice, and speed. 

In the United States, it is considered a schedule II drug, meaning it has a high potential for misuse and a high risk for developing severe mental or physical dependence (addiction).

It does have limited medical usage and can be prescribed under the brand name Desoxyn to treat ADHD or obesity. However, it is rarely prescribed as safer drugs such as Adderall and Ritalin are now available.

Effects of Meth

Methamphetamine increases the brain’s production of dopamine, a chemical that is involved in body movement, motivation, and rewarding behaviors. It is a central nervous system stimulant.

Users typically feel the effects of meth directly after taking it. The effects of meth typically happen in three stages:

The Rush

The initial «rush» happens as dopamine floods your brain. It typically lasts about 30 minutes. This is the most intense part of the experience.

The High

The user will be high for the next four to 16 hours. They will experience rapid speech, obsessive behavior, and rapid thinking patterns.

The Crash

Once the methamphetamine starts to wear off, the user may begin to «tweak.» They may start to itch, grow paranoid, and experience insomnia. Withdrawal symptoms can now set in.

Adverse short-term side effects of meth use include:

  • Agitation
  • Inability to focus
  • Poor balance and coordination
  • Inability to follow directions
  • Inattention
  • Depressed reflexes
  • Increased reaction time
  • Motor excitation
  • Restlessness
  • Time distortion

Adverse long-term side effects of meth abuse include:

  • Malnourishment
  • Extreme weight loss
  • Severe dental problems («meth mouth»)
  • Itching, leading to skin sores from scratching
  • Anxiety
  • Changes in brain function
  • Memory loss
  • Sleeping problems
  • Violent behavior
  • Paranoia
  • Hallucinations

Mental Health Risks

Psychosis has been reported as an effect of long term use. Psychosis is a severe mental disorder that impairs your thoughts and emotions so much that you lose contact with external reality. Meth-induced psychosis can occur during intoxication or afterward during withdrawal.

Meth Addiction

Crystal meth is one of the most addictive drugs in the world. Because it has such a powerful effect on the brain’s reward system, even first-time meth users have a very strong drive to use it again. After just a few uses, people can develop psychological or physical dependence, especially if the drug is smoked or injected.

Meth Withdrawal

Because the physical addiction to meth is very intense, withdrawal symptoms are also severe. Withdrawal symptoms can begin approximately 24 hours after the last dose. Generally, the heavier the drug use, the worse your symptoms will be.

Meth withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Shaking
  • Itchy eyes
  • Joint pain
  • Headaches
  • Clammy skin
  • Hyperventilation
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Psychosis
  • Depression

Meth Overdose

There are two different types of methamphetamine overdose:

  • An acute (sudden) methamphetamine overdose occurs when someone takes meth by accident or on purpose. Side effects can be deadly.
  • chronic (long-term) methamphetamine overdose refers to the health consequences of using meth on a regular basis. 

If you overdose on methamphetamine, you may experience the following symptoms:

  • Irritation
  • Chest pain
  • Coma or unresponsiveness (in extreme cases)
  • Heart attack
  • Hypotension (low blood pressure)
  • Cardiac arrhythmias (Irregular or stopped heartbeat)
  • Dyspnea (trouble breathing)
  • Hyperthermia (high body temperature)
  • Renal failure (kidney damage) 
  • Paranoia
  • Seizures
  • Severe stomach pain
  • Stroke

How Long Does Meth Last?

Users can inject, smoke, swallow, or snort methamphetamine. Injecting or smoking will cause the drug to reach the brain very quickly, causing a “rush” or “flash” of euphoria. The high will be more intense but wear off quicker. Swallowing or snorting the drug will cause the high to be spread out up to 12 hours, and aftereffects can last up to 24 hours.

Half-Life of Meth

The half-life of methamphetamine is approximately 10 hours. This means that after 10 hours, half of the ingested dose has been metabolized and removed from the bloodstream.

Drug Testing for Meth

After ingestion, meth enters your urine, sweat, blood, and hair. All hair and fluid samples can be tested for meth. However, urine tests are the most common and cost-effective way of detecting methamphetamine.

How Long Does Meth Stay in Your Urine?

Meth will show up in your urine within an hour of ingesting the drug. A urine test can detect meth one to three days after the last use for occasional users, and seven to ten days for very heavy users.

How Long Does Meth Stay in Your Blood?

Meth typically leaves your bloodstream completely after 48 hours. However, blood tests may be able to detect it after three to four days in chronic users who ingest large doses.

How Long Does Meth Stay in Your Saliva?

Meth remains in your saliva for one to four days after the last use. A cotton swab can collect oral fluid from your mouth for a saliva test.

How Long Does Meth Stay in Your Hair?

Meth reaches your hair follicles seven to ten days after use and remains in them for up to 90 days. However, a hair follicle test is typically more expensive than other methods of testing. Further, their results are more controversial as environmental contamination may cause false positives.

How Long Does Meth Stay In Your Body?

How long meth will stay on your system depends on dose of meth ingested, frequency of use, and how your body metabolizes methamphetamine. Meth typically stays in your urine for 1-10 days, blood for 1-3 days, saliva 1-4 days and hair up to 90 days.

Meth Rehab Options

Meth addiction is treated similarly to most substance use disorders. While there is no FDA-approved medication to treat methamphetamine use, there is a wide range of addiction treatment programs that help individuals recover through detox, behavioral therapy, and peer support.

  • Inpatient Programs — Inpatient treatment takes place at a licensed residential treatment center. These programs provide 24/7 comprehensive, structured care. You'll live in safe, substance-free housing and have access to professional medical monitoring. The first step of an inpatient program is detoxification. Then behavioral therapy and other services are introduced. These programs typically last 30, 60, or 90 days, sometimes longer. Most programs help set up your aftercare once you complete the inpatient portion of your treatment.
  • Partial Hospitalization Programs (PHPs) — Partial hospitalization programs (PHPs) are sometimes referred to as intensive outpatient programs (IOPs). Compared to inpatient programs, partial hospitalization programs provide similar services. These include medical services, behavioral therapy, and support groups, along with other customized therapies. However, in a partial hospitalization program, you return home to sleep. Some services provide food and transportation, but services vary by program. PHPs accept new patients as well as people who have completed an inpatient program and still need intensive treatment.
  • Outpatient Programs — Outpatient treatment is less intensive than inpatient or partial hospitalization programs. These programs organize your treatment session your schedule. The goal of outpatient treatment is to provide therapy, education, and support in a flexible environment. They are best for people who have a high motivation to recover and cannot leave their responsibilities at home, work, or school. Outpatient programs are often part of aftercare programs once you complete an inpatient or partial hospitalization program.
  • Support Groups — Support groups such as Narcotics Anonymous and SMART Recovery are open to anyone with a substance abuse problem. They are peer-led organizations dedicated to helping each other remain sober. They can be the first step towards recovery or part of a long-term aftercare plan.

What's Next?


How Long Does Methamphetamine Stay in Your System?

How Long Does Methamphetamine (Meth) Stay in Your System?

Methamphetamine, or meth, is one of the most insidious threats to public health. It is highly addictive, easily accessible, and readily available in most areas. Because of its prevalence, employers, probation officers, and others now routinely test for it in various situations.

It’s important to know how meth interacts with your body chemistry, how it affects the health of your liver and kidneys, and how long injecting meth or smoking meth will show up in a test. Below, we’ve answered some of the most frequently asked questions.

How Long Will Meth Show Up on A Drug Test?

Typically, meth will show up on a drug test for about 72 hours after dosing. However, there are mitigating factors here that will change that number. For instance, if you use meth regularly, it will be detectable in your urine for much longer – up to a week in some cases. 

Another factor will be the testing method. If the employer uses saliva or blood testing, the intervals are much shorter. With hair testing, it can show up as long as 90 days from the last dose, although this will vary from hair test to hair test.

How Long Does Crystal Meth Stay in Your System?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to how long crystal meth stays in your system. Instead, it will vary many factors, including your metabolic rate, the amount used, your usage history, and even the health of your internal organs. 

How Long to Get Methamphetamine Your System?

It can take many days for meth to leave your system naturally. Even then, it will remain in your hair and be detectable for up to 3 months. Cleaning and even dying your hair will have no effect – the meth will still be detectible. 

How Does Your Body Metabolize Methamphetamine: Meth Half-Life

The average meth half-life is 10 hours, which means it takes that long for your body to eliminate 50% of the drug. However, the second 50% is eliminated much more slowly. Other factors also play a role here.

For instance, smoking meth, injecting meth and taking it orally all lead to different metabolic times. The way the body metabolizes meth is unique. Peak uptake occurs in the lungs and kidneys, followed by other organs, such as the stomach, spleen, and pancreas. The liver also plays a role here. The lowest uptake levels are in the heart and brain. 

Meth clears fastest from the lungs and the heart and lasts the longest in the brains, stomach, and liver. Ultimately, it accumulates over time and does not leave the body. According to a study published in The Journal of Nuclear Medicine, it accounts for its high toxicity and mortality rates.

Get Help for Methamphetamine Addiction at North Star Treatment Services

Meth is a destructive substance. Highly addictive, it can wreak havoc on your life and body. However, it is possible to break the cycle of abuse and withdrawal. Call North Star Treatment Services today to take the first step toward a new life.




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