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There are a number of reasons why you may want to know how long cocaine stays in your system, urine, saliva and blood for. Whatever your reasons, Delamere are dedicated to educating, supporting and providing first class treatment if you feel you have a problem with cocaine.
Drug testing is becoming more common in the workplace. Tests for cocaine in your system can be carried out by the police if they suspect you are driving under the influence. Social services and law enforcement orders are another reason someone may want to know how long cocaine stays in your system for, especially if they are struggling to control their cocaine use.
Here we explain the various means by which cocaine can be tested for, and how long the window frames of detection work for each testing method. We also explain the variables that can affect how you as an individual metabolise cocaine and how this can affect how long cocaine stays in your system.
Cocaine is a very addictive, powerful, class A drug. It can be hard just to have just one line, bump or smoke and walk away. Cocaine can only be purchased illegally from street dealers and is historically at its highest in purity and potency.
Most individuals that use cocaine, binge on the drug. This is due to the powerful drug cravings that cocaine produces.
Cocaine comes in powder form and solid form (crack cocaine). Powdered cocaine can be taken by snorting, smoking, rubbing into the gums, injecting or swallowing (bombing).
Crack cocaine can be taken by smoking, swallowing or injecting.
Regardless of how powdered cocaine or crack cocaine are consumed, the time frames for various drug testing detection methods remain very similar. They are only influenced by the variables that are unique in each individual person.
Cocaine leaves your system in approximately 3 days. In long term heavy cocaine users this timeframe is extended. Whilst cocaine leaves your actual system in around 3 days, hair strand tests can detect cocaine use for a much longer period of time. (1,2)
How long cocaine stays in your urine
Cocaine can remain in your urine for up to three days after use, although for a heavy user this can rise to two weeks. (1,2)
How long cocaine stays in your saliva
Traces of powdered cocaine can be picked up your saliva, using a saliva test that is swabbed around the inside of your mouth, for up to two days after use (1)
How long cocaine stays in your blood
Cocaine remains in your bloodstream and can be detected in a blood test for up to two days after use (1)
Cocaine hair strand test
Cocaine can be detected in a hair strand test for up to several months and even years in regular, heavy cocaine users (1)
Because of its purity levels, crack cocaine remains in your system generally for up to 4 days, although it can be detected in hair strand tests for months after use. In heavy and chronic users, crack remains in a person’s system for much longer (1)
Crack is the solid and purest form of cocaine available. Crack cocaine produces a more intense high than powdered cocaine but for a shorter amount of time.
Crack cocaine, also a Class A illegal street drug, is even more addictive and dangerous than powdered cocaine.
How long crack stays in your urine
Crack stays in your urine and can be detected by a drug urine test for up to 4 days after taking the drug. In chronic and heavy crack users this is extended for up to two weeks (1.2)
How long crack stays in your saliva
Crack can be detected by a saliva mouth swab test for up to 2 days after consumption (3)
How long crack stays in your blood
Crack stays in your bloodstream and can be detected by a blood test for up to 24 hours after use (3)
How long crack stays in your hair follicles
Crack can be detected in hair strand tests for up to 3 months. Sometimes much longer in chronic and long term users. (1)
There are a number of short term factors that are individual to you and will affect how long cocaine stays in your system; these include (5,6,7):
Medication mixed with cocaine
Some medications will interfere with how cocaine is metabolised. Medication can also have an impact on the sort of effect cocaine has on a person and how long cocaine stays in their system
Frequency of cocaine use
Individuals who use cocaine frequently will find that the drug remains in their system for longer than someone who has only begun taking it. This is due to the fact that frequent cocaine users will metabolise the drug slower due to the build up of toxins in the liver and other vital organs.
Hydration levels affect how long cocaine stays in your system. Someone who is well hydrated will be able to flush cocaine out of their system quicker than someone who is not.
Levels of cocaine use
Those that take more cocaine and more potent forms of cocaine will process cocaine at a slower rate. Potency of cocaine and the amount you take can affect how your vital organs work. Someone who takes large amounts of cocaine or a very potent/pure form of cocaine will take longer to rid their system of the drug.
Level of alcohol use
Consuming alcohol with cocaine produces a third more potent and toxic drug (cocaethylene). Cocaethylene takes longer for the body to process.
There are a number of long term factors individual to you that will affect how long cocaine stays in your system, these include (5,6,7):
As people get older their bodies cannot metabolise drugs as efficiently and swiftly as they would when younger. This means that the presence of cocaine will remain in an older person’s body for longer.
A person’s gender is another strong influential factor. As women tend to have more body fat than men, women take longer to process cocaine.
If a person has a higher BMI, they are likely to have more fat cells. This is significant, certain physical elements of cocaine can be stored in fat cells for longer.
Health problems can influence how long cocaine stays in a person’s system for. If an individual has underlying health issues with their kidneys or liver, they will take longer to process cocaine and eliminate it from their system.
A person’s genetics can strongly influence how long cocaine stays in their system. There are several different types of enzymes in our bodies that influence how we process drugs and toxins. The number and efficiency of these enzymes varies hugely from person to person and is down to individual genetic make-up.
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