Science Says You Should Take a Marijuana Tolerance Break. Here’s Why!

Written By Steve Hardy
March 11, 2021
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Science Says You Should Take a Marijuana Tolerance Break. Here’s Why!

For millions of Americans, marijuana has become a part of their everyday lives. One poll from Marist College and Yahoo News found that 52% of American adults have tried cannabis, and 14% of American adults use it regularly.

People might smoke weed for a number of different reasons. They might use it for medical reasons, to help them relax at the end of the day, to help them access their creative side, or simply because they enjoy it.

However, when you smoke cannabis regularly you can build up a tolerance. For that reason, it is common for regular users should take a marijuana tolerance break every once in a while. Are you wondering why you should take a tolerance break on what it will be like? Let’s take a look at everything you need to know.

How Does Tolerance Develop?

When people use cannabis regularly, tolerance can build up. When you build a tolerance to a substance, your body requires more of the substance to feel the same effect it used to feel with less. Building up a tolerance can be an annoyance for recreational users but it can pose a serious issue for people that use marijuana for medical purposes.

The psychoactive compound in cannabis is tetrahydrocannabinol, which is more commonly known as THC. The way that THC works are that it binds with CB1 receptors in the brain. These receptors are reduced over time if you use cannabis frequently.

What this means is that the same amount of THC that you used to consume won’t impact the subject in the same way. You will therefore experience effects from the same amount over time. There are a number of different factors that can influence how tolerance develops. These include how strong the cannabis you’re using is, how often you use it, and your personal biology.

What Is a Marijuana Tolerance Break?

It is common for people who have built up a tolerance to cannabis to take a tolerance break occasionally. This is widely referred to as a “T break.” Some studies have found that your CB1 receptors can return to their previous levels and recover over time even when they have been depleted by regular cannabis use. For this reason, regular users will frequently take breaks from using cannabis in any form to help reset their tolerance.

The perfect length of a tolerance break for you might be different from the next person. For this reason, it’s a good idea to experiment with what works for you. People might take a tolerance break with a length ranging from two days to a month or more.

What Are the Benefits of a Marijuana Tolerance Break?

Marijuana Tolerance

There are a lot of benefits of a marijuana tolerance break. When you take regular breaks from using cannabis, it can help to minimize the risks that come along with consuming too much THC. Some of the risks associated with consuming cannabis are the potential to develop cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (CH) and cannabis use disorder (CUD).

When you take a break from using cannabis, it disrupts any physical dependence your body might have on THC.

Additionally, tolerance breaks are great because they reset your tolerance. This means that you do not have to use as much cannabis when you start smoking again to feel your desire effects. Of course, this is also good news for your wallet, as you won’t need to go to nearly as much of your stash each session.

How Long of a Cannabis Tolerance Break Should You Take?

Everyone has their own unique relationship with cannabis. For that reason, the ideal length of a tolerance break will probably differ between people.

In general, even just a few days without using cannabis can be enough to notice a difference when you start smoking again. If you feel like you are relying too much on using cannabis in your daily lives, it might be a good idea to take a break for a week or two. This can help shake up your usual routine.

A good rule of thumb is to wait until it feels like your body has adjusted and your mind has acclimated to this new feeling of clear-headedness. Once you feel like you’ve gotten into the groove, your tolerance is likely to reset.

If it is your goal to completely flush your body with any THC or other cannabinoids, you’ll probably want to take a longer break than two weeks. THC and other chemical compounds in cannabis can stay in your system for more than 30 days.

How Often Should I Take a Tolerance Break?

How often you take a tolerance break is completely up to you. There is not a ton of research that has been done regarding the topic as of yet. However, some patient advocate groups and cannabis-centric physicians have suggested that it is a good idea to take a two-day break every 30 days. This can help to prevent physical dependence and manage tolerance.

Marijuana Tolerance Break TipsMarijuana Tolerance Break

If smoking or otherwise consuming cannabis is a part of your daily routine, taking a tolerance break, even for a few days, can feel like a big deal. One thing that can help you stick to your plan of taking a tolerance break is by telling your friends that you will be smoking for a while. If your friends are good people who support you, they will respect you by not tempting you with the notion of smoking. If your friend gives you a really hard time for taking a short break, this is potentially a reason to consider whether or not your friends want the best for you and respect your decisions.

It can also be a good idea to pick up a new hobby at this time. This is something that you can do instead of smoking whenever you have the urge to smoke. Maybe you decide to start going for runs, hiking, knitting, learning Photoshop, or anything else that appeals to you.

Coming up with a list of things to do when you have the urge to smoke is also helpful. You can refer to this list whenever you think about breaking your tolerance break. Things on this list could include reading, drinking a glass of water, going for a short walk, doing some yoga, or anything else that can break you from fixating on the idea of smoking.

You’ll also want to pick a specific date that your tolerance break will end. If you leave it wishy-washy, chances are you’ll start smoking again sooner rather than later.

It’s also a good idea to find a different place for your stash as well as your class pieces during your break. See if a trusted friend can hold onto them for you. If that’s an option, but them in an out-of-the-way place where you’ll have to think long and hard before you light up.

Starting an exercise routine is also an awesome way to help deal with taking a tolerance break. It’s also a good idea to make sure that you are getting outside often and enjoying the fresh air and nature. Picking up a mindfulness routine or a meditative practice can also be very helpful during this time.

You want to be careful not to substitute one vice for another when you’re taking a tolerance break. Some people might be tempted to turn to alcohol or junk food when they are taking a break from cannabis. Equip yourself with a lot of healthy activities that you can do to ensure that you don’t just spend the time and equally if not more self-destructive way.

You might consider trying some other herbs when you are taking your tolerance break. There are a lot of herbal teas you can try that many find they can help you feel calm, energized, or experience other effects.

It‘s also a good idea to make sure that you are eating while and drinking plenty of water. One thing you might want to know is that THC is stored in your fat. Depending on what you eat, it might take longer for the THC in your fat to metabolize and leave your system.

What Else Can You Do to Lower Your Tolerance?

Perhaps taking a tolerance break is not something that you can do at this time. For example, stop taking cannabis can be an issue for people who are using the plant to help manage medical symptoms.

There are a number of other ways that you can try to lower your tolerance without going cold turkey. Our first piece of advice for allowing your tolerance is exercise. Combining exercise and smoking weed can both help lower your tolerance and enhance your high.

You can also simply start to smoke less cannabis throughout the day. Are you somebody who is smoking 20 bowls or joints every single day? If that’s the case, probably a good idea to cut back. Smoking that often can make your tolerance incredibly high. Cut down on how much your smoking throughout the day and your tolerance will gradually reduce. You’ll also notice that you’re not spending nearly as much money on cannabis.

Many people enjoy a good wake and bake session, but if this is what you’re doing every day it’s not good for your tolerance. Have you ever noticed that maintaining a high you achieved earlier seems more difficult than getting high the first time? Use this knowledge to your benefit and wait until the afternoon or evening to smoke your first bowl.

You can also try smoking a smaller amount. Consider getting a chillum or otherwise paring down on how much you smoke each session. If you’ve been smoking a bong or blunts, consider switching to a bowl or joints.

What Are the Possible Withdrawal Symptoms You Might Experience?What Are the Possible Withdrawal Symptoms You Might Experience

Not everyone will experience withdrawal symptoms when they stop smoking marijuana. However, it is more likely for people who are chronic cannabis users. Don’t be too afraid of the potential for withdrawal symptoms, as they are not usually anywhere near as intense as the withdrawal symptoms someone might experience when they stop using alcohol or other drugs.

Some of the withdrawal symptoms that you might experience when you stop smoking cannabis include:

  • Fatigue
  • Mood swings
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Headaches
  • Stomach problems, including nausea
  • Diminish appetite
  • Intense, vivid dreams
  • Insomnia

If you’re experiencing the symptoms, make sure that you are getting plenty of rest and staying hydrated. If you have not you are headaches, you can also try using over-the-counter medications. Getting some fresh air and exercise can help reduce slumps in your mood and can help you feel alert.

You typically will not experience any cannabis withdrawal symptoms past 72 hours.

How to Prevent Your Tolerance From Building Up In The Future

You might consider trying to keep their tolerance in check in the future. This might mean taking a brief break every 30 days rather than a longer break once a year. One thing you can do to prevent your tolerance from building up is to use lower THC products.

You can also decrease how much you use at a time or decrease how often you use it. You also might consider using other cannabis cannabinoids such as CBD or delta-8-THC. If you want to learn more about delta-8, you should check out this article from

Is It Time For You to Take a Break?

It can be difficult to take a tolerance break when you are used to smoking cannabis. However, the more dependent you feel on marijuana, the more it is probably a good idea for you to take a brief break. We will still be there when your break is over, and you’ll be able to return with a clear head, lower tolerance, and a new outlook. Did you find this article about taking a marijuana tolerance break interesting? If so, be sure to check out the rest of our blog for the more fascinating and informative content!

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