Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Will drinking water really clean your system of drugs faster?"
If you use illegal drugs, I recommend you see a primary care physician, psychiatrist or addiction specialist soon for an evaluation. Drug users concerned about detection of illicit substances in their urine at the time of drug testing tend to go to great lengths to try to avoid a positive drug test, including consuming large quantities of water. The way drug testing works is as follows. When you use drugs, they enter your blood stream, circulate throughout the body, and are absorbed by tissues throughout the body. Once the drugs enter body tissue, the time-span over which they are retained in the body after the last use, for the most part, has to do with the solubility of the drug in water and the way the drugs are metabolized by the body. Drugs that have poor solubility in water, such as the THC in cannabis, stay trapped in body fat for around a month, while other drugs that are more water soluble tend to be excreted quickly over the course of a few days. Even among some water soluble substances that are excreted quickly, like alcohol, the liver creates special metabolites that linger in the body for a week or so. Drinking an increased amount of water can help clear water soluble drugs in some cases, but won't do too much to increase the clearance of relatively insoluble drugs such as THC. But let me briefly explain a couple important points. The only sure way to test negative on a drug test is not to use drugs. Drug use is dangerous and results in serious physical, psychological, and social harm to you and the people around you. If you use illegal drugs, you need to quit as soon as possible. In fact, you really need to see a primary care physician, psychiatrist, or addiction specialist for an evaluation, because if you are being drug tested, have used drugs anyways, and are now concerned about how not to be caught, the chances are that you meet criteria for the diagnosis of substance abuse, which is a deadly psychiatric problem that requires intensive treatment. In the meantime, try going to a 12 step recovery meeting, such as alcoholics anonymous, with an open mind to see if you can relate to the stories you hear from other people at the meeting.
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