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How Long Does Cocaine Stay in Your System?

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Passing a drug test is the first step toward getting the job you want, but true success comes with effort, attention to detail and a clear mind.







If you’re thinking about applying for a job that you know involves a drug test, your only sure-to-succeed option is to stop using cocaine. That’s especially true if you don’t know what type of drug test you’ll be taking.

How Long Does Cocaine Stay in Your Saliva and Blood?

Cocaine is a central nervous stimulant that works very fast to give you an intense but euphoric high lasting a few minutes to an hour depending on how it is administered.

Once you take cocaine, your body’s blood and liver get to work breaking it down into metabolites. These stay in your system for a while and are what get picked up on a drug test.

Some metabolites remain in your system longer than others thus your window for detection can depend based on the metabolites being tested.

Blood tests are less common than other tests since they require more time and more (expensive) specialized equipment. Saliva tests are much more common.

The half-life, or the amount of time a substance is detectable in your blood, of cocaine in blood plasma is roughly 1.5 hours. This means that sufficient cocaine can show up in your blood test about 2 days after your last use. This half-life can be increased with long-term use.

After your last use, cocaine can be detected in your saliva for approximately 12 to 48 hours.

How Long Does Cocaine Stay in Your Urine?

Urine is the most common means of testing for cocaine both in at-home kits and for lab-processed screenings since it is fast, cheap, and simple.

Cocaine is mainly metabolized by enzymes found in your blood and liver, and benzoylecgonine is the major cocaine metabolite that is found in urine which results from the breaking down of the drug.

If you’re an infrequent user of cocaine, a drug test that detects cocaine in urine will only be positive for up to 3 days after the last time you used it.

However, if you’re a frequent and heavy cocaine user, cocaine can start to accumulate in body tissue and it may be detectable as long as two to three weeks after you last used it.

How Long Does Cocaine Stay in Your Hair?

Tests that use hair samples are considered the gold standard of drug testing. That’s because they can detect cocaine use for up to 90 days. Tests of your hair are most often used for government jobs or positions which involve the use of heavy machinery.

When you ingest drugs, they go into the hair follicle and then the shaft, where they pretty much stay put as long as the hair is on your head.

Does that mean you’re in trouble if you have long hair, which could allow a test to detect years of cocaine use?

The standard way of conducting a hair drug test is to test only the inch and a half of hair that is closest to the root. (If you’re worried about drug use that occurred a long time ago, some sources recommend watching as the test is done to make sure they use hair closest to the roots.)

You’ll find claims online that special shampoos can “beat” a drug test, but most experts agree that hair drug tests are cheat-proof.

Other Factors Affecting Detection Time

How much you weigh, your age, your metabolism, your amount of body fat and your general health can all impact how quickly your body can get cocaine completely out of urine, blood or saliva samples.

Various other factors affect how long the cocaine will stay in your system:

  • The amount of cocaine taken
  • How frequently you took cocaine
  • How you consumed cocaine (snorted, dabbed, smoked, injected, etc.)
  • Whether you drank alcohol concurrently
  • The purity level of the cocaine

The only guaranteed way to pass a drug test is to stop using cocaine. If that’s hard, know that cocaine is extremely addictive—and you may need help learning how to live without it.

There are no shortage of claims on the internet regarding ways to get cocaine out of your system faster using home remedies and various products but none have any scientific backing.

How long does crack cocaine stay in your system?

Crack cocaine is even more dangerous and addictive than powdered cocaine. Crack cocaine can be found in your system for up to 4 days thanks to its purity. Heavier use will mean it will remain in your system longer: up to 2 weeks for your urine and up to 2 days in your bloodstream.

Rehab for Cocaine Addiction at The Raleigh House

The Raleigh House is a residential treatment center located in Denver that believes addiction isn’t just a physical problem. That is especially true of cocaine, which changes the way the brain works. Our team of doctors, therapists, nurses and even a nutritionist knows how to best help—and give hope to—those in recovery for cocaine abuse.

We’d love to answer any questions you may have. Fill out our form or contact us today to learn more about the cocaine addiction treatment program at The Raleigh House. You can also give us a call at (720) 891-4657.

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