How Long Does Second-Hand Meth Smoke Stay In Your System?

If you were recently around someone who was smoking methamphetamines, your body might have interacted with the drug even if you weren’t consuming it yourself. In fact, this drug might be traceable in your system just because you were around it while it was being smoked.

Methamphetamine smoke, like other kinds of smoke, is able to bind to certain parts of the body and cling to them, which can result in eventual health problems. So even if you don’t smoke meth, you are at risk for developing methamphetamine-related effects & complications if you surround yourself with people who smoke meth often and/or while other people are around.

What Happens When You Smoke Meth?

Methamphetamine, the second most popular illicit drug in the world, is a stimulant that speeds up the body’s systems to create a euphoric effect and increase productivity. This Schedule II Drug has a high potential for misuse, abuse, and addiction. Meth is used as a recreational drug and is typically sold illegally on the street under names like meth, crank, speed, and crystal.

While meth can also be injected and administered in a few other ways, most people choose to smoke this substance. This is primarily because smoking meth causes the effects to begin almost immediately. When someone smokes meth, they will feel a rush within seconds.

A person who smokes meth is likely to experience one or more of the following effects:

  • Lowered inhibitions
  • Sharpened attention
  • Physical alertness
  • Reduced fatigue
  • Increased energy
  • Euphoric effects
  • Higher productivity
  • Decreased appetite
  • Hyperthermia (increased body temperature)

These effects last relatively long compared to those of other drugs. Someone who smokes meth may experience the effects of the drug for about 6 to 12 hours, but the duration may vary. But even when someone stops feeling the effects of meth, the drug will stay in their system. So someone could feel completely sober several days after taking meth, but their body will still be working to remove all traces of methamphetamine and its smoke from the body.

How Long Does Meth Smoke Stay In The Body?

How long meth stays in the body depends on several factors, like how much meth someone used and how often they use it. When it comes to drug tests, results may vary depending on the type of test and how the meth was ingested. The different types of drug tests usually have varied detection time ranges. Blood tests, for example, can detect meth for about one to three days. Saliva tests could detect it for anywhere from one to four days. Urine tests, which are the most common, can detect one-time use of meth within one to four days and can determine heavy use for up to one week (seven days). Meth stays in the hair for the longest period of time, for anywhere up to about 90 days. 

Second-Hand Methamphetamine Smoke

So what happens if an individual is in contact with someone while they are smoking meth? There are a lot of studies behind what inhaling secondhand tobacco or marijuana smoke could do to a person, but less people talk about the effects of second-hand methamphetamine smoke.

The more someone is around people who smoke meth or is in an environment where meth is made and smoked, they are likely to be exposed to second-hand smoke and other effects. Even just living in a house where meth used to be produced may cause someone to have traces of meth in their system. Children who have lived in previous meth houses have tested positive on tests because of their exposure to the chemical. This is because the chemical residue of meth can stick on walls for years and can easily affect the health of people who dwell in that space. In fact, being around someone who smokes meth frequently has been proven to be safer than frequenting or staying in a meth lab or house (somewhere where meth is made and smoked.)

It is definitely possible to feel the effects of second-hand smoke if someone has smoked meth with you in the room. While it is unlikely that second-hand meth smoke will make you high or get you addicted to the substance, it may cause some unwanted & uncomfortable health effects. Meth exposure may cause symptoms like headaches, nausea, vomiting, breathing problems, asthma, and lung disease. Exposure to meth smoke can make you feel sick almost instantly. 

Removing Meth Smoke From Your System

If you have smoked meth or been around someone who smoked it, you will have to wait for the drug to naturally be metabolized from your system. Meth is metabolized, or broken down, into amphetamine and 4-hydromethamphetamine by a liver enzyme and is then removed by the kidneys through urination. There are a few ways to possibly speed up this process and make it more comfortable: drinking lots of water, getting some rest, and doing exercise may help.

If you’re concerned about testing positive on a drug test or feeling negative effects after being exposed to meth smoke, it may be time to talk to your doctor about the best next steps. If you have consumed meth, your doctor may recommend a detoxing plan and inpatient or outpatient care at a rehabilitation center.

To learn more about second-hand meth smoke and if yourself or a loved one need meth detox, contact our team of substance abuse treatment representatives by giving us a call at 866-345-2147.