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Discovering how long alcohol can be detected in someone’s body depends primarily on how much alcohol was consumed over what period of time. Determining when someone could pass an alcohol test can be done using our calculator below.
How Long Does Alcohol Stay in Your Urine System
Generally speaking, an average person metabolizes 1 serving of alcohol per hour. The minute someone starts drinking alcohol, his or her body starts metabolizing it. The human body metabolizes alcohol at a rate of .012% – .015% of the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) per hour. In theory, if you drank at a rate of approximately .015% BAC per hour, your BAC would remain at zero.
The rate of processing alcohol in the human body is based on certain factors, including:
- Food consumed recently
- Tolerance of alcohol
- Overall health
The amount of alcohol in a person’s body is known as their blood alcohol concentration (BAC). There are several factors affecting a person’s BAC. BAC is the answer to the equation: Total number of grams of ethanol (alcohol) in 100 milliliters of their blood.
Once a person knows their BAC, it is a matter of dividing it by the rate of metabolizing alcohol (between 0.12% – 0.15%). The answer would be how long it might take to become alcohol-free (0.00 BAC).
Calculate How Long Does Alcohol Stay In Your System Urine
This easy-to-use calculator will determine someone’s BAC and how long it would take to be alcohol-free. It determines someone’s BAC at the point they stopped drinking and also calculates the amount of time for it to drop to zero.
Ethyl Glucuronide (EtG) is a direct metabolite used by the body to process alcohol. EtG type tests are looking for the presence of a metabolite, known as ethyl glucuronide, in the blood or urine. It can determine if alcohol has been metabolized within the past 80 to 90 hours. An EtG can determine whether someone metabolized any alcohol within the past 3 to 4 days. An EtG type of test can detect alcohol consumption up to 80 Hours after drinking started.
The reason gender is a key factor is men have a higher percentage of water weight (.58) than women (.49) by almost 10%. This means everything else being equal, a woman’s BAC will be higher, since BAC is based on converting water into the amount of blood in their body divided by the amount of alcohol.
How much someone weighs is a primary factor because BAC is a function of “grams of ethanol in 100 milliliters of blood”. So, the more someone weighs the higher volume of blood there is in their body.
How Much Alcohol Was Consumed
The more alcohol someone drinks, the more alcohol your body needs to metabolize and that takes time.
The human body starts to metabolize alcohol as soon as the person starts drinking.
How Alcohol Is Processed
After about five percent of absorbed ethanol reaches the kidneys, the body begins actively excreting alcohol through urination. Additionally, alcohol inhibits production of vasopressin, a hormone that helps conserve body fluids. Without vasopressin to prevent fluid loss, urination increases and the body usually begins excreting alcohol within 20 to 25 minutes of being consumed.
- Drinking coffee or taking cold showers won’t work. Only time can reduce BAC
- Even if you drank 24 hours ago, a Breathalyzer test could still show someone is over the legal limit
- Drinking the night before and then “sleeping it off” doesn’t mean you’ll pass a BAC test
- Drinking water while drunk won’t make you drunker. In fact, drinking water can help dilute the amount of alcohol saturating body tissues and expedite excretion of alcohol through urine and perspiration.
- Alcohol detox is an entirely different process than naturally eliminating alcohol from the body. Anyone needing detoxification should enter a medically supervised program.
- Aside from suffering a “hangover”, occasional drinkers will not suffer the serious symptoms of abstaining from alcohol that alcoholics endure. The severity of alcohol detox symptoms also means that long-time alcohol abusers should never try to go “cold turkey” alone. It can be fatal.
Other Types of Alcohol Testing
- Breathalyzers detect alcohol in the blood within the past 24 hours of drinking
- A saliva test can detect traces of alcohol in the body up to 12 days after drinking
- Hair follicle testing for alcohol is the most precise and can detect alcohol in your system three months after ingesting alcohol.
Things To Try To Get Alcohol Out of The System
There is no “magic bullet” or over the counter products for cleansing the human body of alcohol. These are some things to try that may help accelerate the detox process:
- Drink plenty of pure water, juice & other fluids (don’t over do it)
- Take a vitamin B complex supplement (only 1 per day)
- Eat healthy food (not too much)
- Light Exercise
From a legal standpoint, knowing whether or not someone has been drinking alcohol can determine someone’s ability to act in a responsible fashion. It is against the law to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. Even a small amount of alcohol, such as a few beers, can impair reaction time coordination and good judgment behind the wheel.
- The legal driving limit, in all 50 states, is 0.08% BAC.