By Nadir Pearson
Let’s be real. Completely and abruptly stopping your cannabis consumption is harder than many people would like to admit. And while people take t-breaks for a lot or reasons, we’ve noticed that the main reasons are:
1) they’ve been buying too much weed and are going broke
2) they want to take a break for mental or physical health reasons or
3) they feel like they are not getting that high anymore and want to reset.
Whatever your reason is for wanting to take a t-break, you can breathe easy knowing that going cold turkey is far from your only option when thinking about laying off the gas.
The basics of a tolerance break
T-breaks, also referred to as “tolerance breaks,” are short periods of time without cannabis (or any other substance). The point of a cannabis tolerance break is to allow your body to recalibrate its endocannabinoid system (ECS) and help restore the desired effects of your highs.
There are three foundational factors to consider when taking a tolerance break:
Method of consumption – The way you enjoy your weed
Dosage – The amount and variation of cannabinoids you are taking in each time you enjoy
Frequency of use – How often you are consuming weed in a day, week, or month
When you go cold turkey, you are effectively adjusting your consumption method, dosage, and frequency all at one time. But adjusting even just one of these factors can have a significant effect on your experience.
By adjusting these levers on your t-break, you can still reshape your tolerance without ditching cannabis completely.
Types of tolerance breaks
Here are six different ways you can reimagine your weed tolerance breaks:
1. The daytime fast
If you are a heavy, frequent consumer of cannabis who smokes multiple times a day, enjoying weed only at night is one of the easiest ways to embark upon a sustainable tolerance break.
Think of this as a daily fast where you wait until your work or big to-dos are done. Here, you are primarily adjusting your frequency of use, and ultimately still rewarding yourself daily.
This is also a great option if you use cannabis as a sleep aid. You can still cut back, but don’t have to sacrifice your sleep routine.
2. Low-dose life
There are two variations of what we like to call low-dose life.
The first way is much more about awareness and lowering the amount of cannabis you consume each time. Instead of packing full bowls of your bong, grab just a pinch or use a one-hitter, and allow yourself to be more aware of how you feel. You might be surprised how little cannabis you need for an optimal vibe.
Your other option is to lower the THC potency of the products you’re consuming. There is a considerable amount of high-THC flower out there, ranging anywhere from 18%-33% THC. Opting for low-dose THC edibles or strains with less THC can make a world of difference in regulating your tolerance.
3. CBD + minor cannabinoids tinctures only
For those who are committed to completely giving THC a break, but still want to benefit from the medicinal properties of cannabis, focusing on non-intoxicating cannabinoids via routes like tinctures is a solid strategy.
For this option, you are going to utilize CBD, THC’s most-well known sibling, and maybe even some other minor cannabinoid cousins like CBG and CBN, too.
The truth is, stopping your THC consumption may lead to some general irritability or other symptoms that mess with your day. CBD and the rest of the entourage effect gang can help make this THC-free time much easier for you.
If you need help finding a reliable source, we suggest starting with Xula or Polite.
4. Oral reward & meditation
Old habits die hard, so it should not be a surprise that part of the mesmerizing act of smoking weed is the meditative breathing we do. The deep inhales and exhales are a huge part of the smoking ritual, and may be the main thing causing you to intake way too much THC.
A helpful hack is to find a vape that helps mimic this aspect of your routine. You can opt for CBD pen like the ZONE CBD vape pen offered from TONIC or even aromatherapy vapes like the ones from MONQ.
CBD hemp flower is an underrated alternative for those who still want to feel the pull of burning flower. This way you can still partake in the peaceful act of smoking and achieve your THC tolerance break.
5. Tobacco-less: no Backwoods, blunts, or front
Blunt aficionados sometimes need to think about taking a tolerance break from using their beloved tobacco-based blunt wraps like Backwoods, cigarillos, and fronto leaf. Getting rid of the leaves is also a great way to focus on smoking a little cleaner or less loudly.
The experience of smoking tobacco with cannabis is undisputably unique and preferred by many, but your lungs will certainly thank you for going tobacco-free, for even a period of time.
6. Smoke-free: topicals and edibles only
Altering the way you consume from smoking to topicals and edibles can help you get a hold of your tolerance, while still tackling body pain and giving your lungs a break.
For regular smokers, choosing to go the non-combustion route is great way to show your lungs some love. By targeting your aches with topicals and eating edibles you can still get some TLC while cutting out smoking all together.
Finding the joy in a tolerance break
The biggest and most difficult part of a tolerance break is committing to a pattern and sticking to it.
Ultimately, you do not have to be so rigid that you cannot adjust your tolerance break as you go. But once you find a routine that works, stick to it and see if it helps you feel more in control of your cannabis consumption.
Just remember: having a cannabis tolerance can actually be a good thing. Being able to medicate and still function at a high level is crucial for many people who use cannabis as medicine.
As a cannabis consumer, the main goal should always be to be mindful of your use and find the regimen that works best for you.