crystal meth

Methamphetamine, otherwise known as meth, was originally used to treat ADHD, but like many other drugs, people started abusing it because of the high it provides and its addictive quality. Now it is estimated that about 1.6 million people have used meth in the past year.1

The problem is that many people do not understand what that are putting into their bodies or how long it will even be in their system and the damage it can cause. How long does the high last? How long until you feel the effects of withdrawal? And how long does meth stay in your blood? What about your urine or hair? As a Chicago drug rehab, we are here to answer all of your questions about meth in your system.

What Is Meth?

Meth is a highly addictive stimulant that arouses the central nervous system. It typically comes in the form of a powder, but it can be smoked, snorted, injected, and even swallowed in pill form. Meth is often abused and sold on the street under many different nicknames. Because of its highly addictive quality, many users struggle to give up meth on their own and must seek out professional meth addiction help.

How Long Can Meth Stay In Your System?

This can be a difficult question to answer because every person is different. Factors like genetics, tolerance, dose, age, weight, and health history may play a role. Also, many meth addicts will chase their high by taking multiple doses in a matter of hours or one day as the meth starts to wear off. This pattern of behavior results in multiple binges and crashes.

How Long Is the Meth High?

The first initial effect of meth is the euphoric rush that is accompanied by the high. The rush will typically begin relatively quickly after administration and the user will feel high for several hours. The high can last anywhere from 6 to 14 hours depending on the person. As more time passes, some users will take more meth to make up for its waning effects.

Metabolizing Meth: Lasting Meth in Your System & Drug Test

Even if you stop feeling the effects, there is still meth in your system. As soon as the drug enters the bloodstream, your body will start metabolizing it immediately, but this process takes time. The half-life of meth is estimated to be anywhere from 6 to 15 hours. Eventually most of the meth will be broken down by the liver before eventually leaving the body in the form of urine. Some tests reveal the lingering meth in your system even days after you stop feeling the effects. Remnants of meth can be found in various places in the body after the initial dose such as:
  • Urine - up to three days later
  • Blood - up to two days later
  • Saliva - one or two days later
  • Hair - as far as three months later
There are many different stages of meth’s effects on the body. From the initial high to the slow withdrawal, meth is dangerous in any capacity when it is abused and can remain in the body for much longer than the effects suggest. Abusing it will also lead to harmful long-term effects even after the meth in your system is gone. If you or someone you love is addicted to meth or another drug, get professional help. Our Chicago PHP works with people addicted to various drugs to let them regain control of their lives.

To learn more about our various programs as well as our facility, reach out to us today at 888-280-4763.


  1. National Institute on Drug Abuse - What is the scope of methamphetamine misuse in the United States?

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Alyssa is Banyan’s Director of Digital Marketing & Technology. After overcoming her own struggles with addiction, she began working in the treatment field in 2012. She graduated from Palm Beach State College in 2016 with additional education in Salesforce University programs. A part of the Banyan team since 2016, Alyssa brings over 5 years of experience in the addiction treatment field.