The dreaded tolerance break. The time comes in every regular cannabis users life to just cut. it. out. Sure, it is doable, but why is it necessary? What does it really do for you anyway?
What It Is
For the recreational cannabis user, a TB is a time when we put the marijuana down and give it a rest for a week or two (or three or four). Not smoking for several weeks builds up your tolerance for marijuana, hence the name tolerance break. You take a break to build your tolerance. It is not always the easiest thing to do, for lots of reasons. Just the ritual of rolling a joint or loading a bowl can be very therapeutic for some people. Others have consciously chosen to use cannabis to unwind instead of alcohol or pharmaceuticals. Deciding to take a break from that stress reliever can be, well, stressful to think about.
Why It Is Important
Regardless of the irritating nature of tolerance breaks, they are hugely important for your body, your mind AND your high.
It is true that cannabis hasn’t been shown to adversely affect the lungs. In fact, in those that are light users, one study shows there was little to no pulmonary issues related to cannabis use. However, in the same paragraph, researchers admit that while they did not have enough heavy marijuana users to make an educated conclusion, it would appear as though heavy use might negatively affect pulmonary function. And have you seen what smoking anything can do to your teeth? Keep those pearly whites in check and schedule a dentists visit during your hiatus from pot. A tolerance break is one way to be kind to your body – your lungs and your teeth.
Although there is not solid evidence that proves cannabis is addictive, any habit can be hard to break. Going for a run is a very common early morning habit and if one day a person decided to stop running in the morning – it would take a while before that person would wake up without the “time to run” reminder. Additionally, that person might not feel the same way throughout the morning without their daily run to set the day up the way they have have been used to. The same with consuming marijuana. If a person has a specific 30 minutes of their day set aside to pack a bowl, smoke it, and have a few deep breaths to themselves – it might feel strange when that doesn’t happen. Being able to reset one’s mind from that habit, to eliminate that distraction, can be empowering and enlightening. You won’t know what a break from cannabis will do for your mind until you try it.
Of course, with a tolerance break, there is also that first joint back. With your new, lowered tolerance, it takes far less consumption of cannabis to hit that feeling of being “high.” If you use pot for stress relief, or just for fun, be prepared to really feel it after your break. For many, this can be as strong a reason as any to take a tolerance break. Even when using cannabis with high levels of THC, those with a high, built up tolerance can have difficulty feeling any effects aside from the first use of the day. Any consumption after that initial one has no discernable effect on some users with a high tolerance. Why consume at all if your tolerance is so high that you can’t even feel it anymore? And thus, the tolerance break was born.
Tolerance breaks are a necessary exercise for any pot user. Next time you think the cannabis you’re using doesn’t seem to be having much of an effect on you anymore, you want to challenge yourself or give your bod a rest – try a tolerance break. It might not be the easiest thing to start, but your body, your mind and your renewed, stronger high will thank you for it.