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How to Stop Smoking Pot/Weed

Three Methods:Quitting Cold-TurkeySeeking Professional HelpQuitting GraduallyCommunity Q&A

If you feel that pot is taking over your life and replacing all of your friends, hobbies, and favorite ways to pass the time, then it's time to quit smoking and get your life back on track. Marijuana may be psychologically addictive, which means that you need to be mentally prepared and willing to give up your habit. So if you're looking for help for getting your old life back and dropping your old habits, you've come to the right place.

Method 1
Quitting Cold-Turkey

  1. 1
    Throw out all your pot and your smoking paraphernalia. If you remove the things that make it easy for you to start smoking again, you might be less likely to give in to your cravings. Here's what you should do:[1]
    • Get rid of any lighters, matches, roach clips, bongs, or containers. Empty out all of your pockets to make sure you didn't miss anything.
    • Flush any remaining weed down the toilet, so you can't simply dig it out of the trash later.
    • Destroy all of your supplies. Or, if you can't render them useless, throw them into a disgusting dumpster so you're not tempted to climb in and get them. (You might want to wrap them in a discreet trash bag first, though.)
    • Get rid of anything that even makes you want to smoke pot, whether it's your favorite video game or a poster in your room. This may sound extreme, but removing your triggers can help you beat your habit.
    • If you have a dealer, take his number out of your phone.
  2. 2
    Make your decision clear to your support system. Tell trustworthy friends and family members what you're doing, and ask for their support in quitting. You'll probably find that they're thrilled to see you quit and support you however they can.
    • This is especially important if you want to remain close to people who are active smokers. Tell them that you're not trying to get them to quit, but you'd appreciate it if they don't pressure you into using. If you get no support from anyone or if they try to get you to "join in", consider whether that person really belongs in your life if he/she can't respect your choices and requests.
    • You may even have to avoid the friends that you smoke with for a while. If your entire social life with your friends consisted of getting high together, then you'll have to find a new social network. This may sound harsh, but that's the way it goes.
  3. 3
    Prepare for withdrawal. The good news is it's temporary: marijuana withdrawal begins 1 day after you quit cold turkey, hits a peak after 2 or 3 days, and eventually levels off after 1 or 2 weeks[2]. You might not experience any or all of them, but it's important to have a plan in place for what you'll do about them instead of going back to pot. The bad news is, there are symptoms. [3] Here are some of the symptoms you may experience:
    • Sleeplessness: Try to avoid caffeine for the first few days, and hit the hay as soon as you're tired in the evening.
    • Decreased appetite: You might feel nauseated at first. Try to eat bland foods that are easy on the stomach, such as bananas, rice, toast, oatmeal and apples.
    • Irritability: As you experience the mood swings that accompany withdrawal, you might find yourself quick to anger or prone to crying. Plan for these ahead of time, and when they happen try to take a step back and acknowledge what's happening. Tell yourself, "This isn't me, and this isn't the situation. It's the withdrawal." Repeat it as often as you need to.
    • Anxiety: Feeling on-edge or generally out of sorts is a common symptom of withdrawal that can come with quitting any drug. When you have a spare minute, close your eyes, breathe deeply, and remember that withdrawal is only temporary.
    • Increased body temperature: you may feel hotter than normal and may start sweating from time to time.
  4. 4
    Find a replacement activity. Instead of using, devote your new free time to a hobby or sport. Try to make it something you can do as quickly and easily as lighting up — such as playing guitar or going for a run — and turn to it whenever you're tempted. If you're feeling too bored or depressed to do this, watch a movie that makes you smile or spend some time with a good friend who is not a user. Here are some other things to try:
    • Taking long walks
    • Talking to an old friend on the phone
    • Swimming
    • Cooking
    • Reading the newspaper
  5. 5
    Change your routine. In addition to finding a new hobby, you should switch up your routine so that you don't start missing pot so badly during the time that you usually spent getting high. Here are some things you can do:[4]
    • Change your morning routine. Try getting up a little earlier or later, having something different for breakfast, or showering at a different time.
    • Change your work or school routine. Go to work or school by a different route, sit in a different seat if you can, and eat something different for lunch.
    • Change your study routine. If you normally study in your bedroom (which leads to smoking pot), mix it up and study at a coffee shop or a library.
    • Don't start eating less just to change up your routine, though. You may find that you're less hungry, but you should try to eat the same amount to stay healthy.
  6. 6
    Manage your urges. You will have an urge, or a craving to smoke, pretty often, and it's important to know how to react to these if you really want to quit. Here are some things you can do to avoid giving in to the craving for pot:[5]
    • Avoid your trigger locations. Don't go to the places that make you want to smoke, whether its your friend's basement or the sop under your high school bleachers.
    • Flee the scene. Wherever you find yourself when you get an urge, get out as soon as you can. Changing your environment as quickly as you can is your best bet.
    • Breathe deeply. Take a deep breath through your mouth and hold the air in your lungs for 5-7 seconds until you feel more calm. Breathe it out through puckered lips, and repeat these steps until the feeling passes.
    • Put something else in your mouth. Finding a substitute for your craving -- as long as it's not alcohol or another drug -- can help curb it. Try sugarless gum, sugarless candy, a diet drink, toothpicks, a pen or pencil, or even a straw.
    • Drink water. Staying hydrated will keep you healthy and will help you battle your urges.
  7. 7
    Stick with it. The worst of the withdrawal should be over in a week or two, and we've all heard that saying about how it takes three weeks to make or break a habit. By the time a month's passed, you should be completely in the clear and free of your addiction. It might seem like an eternity while you're dealing with it, but try to remember that it's not that long.
    • Plan a small celebration a month from your quit date. Having a milestone to look forward to can help you stay on-track, and you can use it as an excuse for a small reward like a night out or a present to yourself.

Method 2
Seeking Professional Help

  1. 1
    Visit a psychiatrist for pharmacological help. A medical doctor (MD) or doctor of osteopathy (DO) can prescribe medications designed to help you ease off of marijuana. If you've tried to quit cold turkey or to quit gradually, or even if you just know that there's no way you can do it on your own, seeing a doctor may be your best bet.
    • Make sure you're committed to quitting before you make an appointment. Not only is visiting a doctor expensive, but many will not take you as a patient again if you continually relapse.
  2. 2
    See a therapist. If there are underlying issues that are driving your marijuana use — such as depression or anxiety — talking them through with a professional could help you quit. If possible, try to find someone who specializes in addiction issues.
    • Look at different modalities. There are several modalities, or types of therapy, that might be appropriate for pot addiction. Talk therapy is the most common kind, but you might also investigate cognitive-behavioral therapy.
  3. 3
    Join a support group. If you're having a hard time quitting on your own because of peer pressure or a lack of confidence, a support group might be the answer for you.
    • Narcotics Anonymous is in several countries, and provides free membership and meetings. Search online for groups in your area.
  4. 4
    Check into inpatient rehab. If nothing else has worked and your marijuana addiction is seriously endangering your health and happiness, you might need the extreme help that inpatient rehab offers.
    • Exhaust all your other options first. Rehab is difficult and expensive, and not something you should enter lightly. If you are truly out of choices, though, it might be the best thing.
    • Find out how many inpatient days your insurance company will cover.

Method 3
Quitting Gradually

  1. 1
    Set a date for when you want to be completely pot-free. Scheduling it somewhere between two weeks and a month out should make it close enough that you don't lose sight of it, but not so close that tapering off feels impossible. If you think this is really unrealistic, you can give yourself a few months to really quit. If pot has really become a major fixture in your life, it will be hard to just give it up after a few weeks.
  2. 2
    Establish a tapering plan. Plot out how much you'll use between now and your quit date. Try to make it a linear process — for example, at the halfway point between today and the quit date, you should be using half as much as you are now.
    • Put your plan on a calendar, marking how much you'll use for every day, and stick to it. Put the calendar in a place where you have to look at it every day, like next to the bathroom mirror or on the refrigerator.
  3. 3
    Portion out your pot ahead of time. Instead of relying on yourself in the moment to only take what's in your tapering plan, set up your portions ahead of time. That way you don't have to think about it — you just take what you've promised yourself you will. Just like taking your medication.
  4. 4
    Stay busy. As your pot use tapers down and you're spending less time using, find activities to do immediately after you smoke. Transition straight from that to doing another hobby or sport you enjoy, so that you don't have time to notice the difference. Though you should still make time to be alone and relax, try to keep your day filled with hobbies, social activities, schoolwork, or anything else that can keep you focused on something other than smoking pot.
    • Take a look at your schedule and try to fill it with as many social engagements and activities as you can without feeling overwhelmed.
  5. 5
    Stay motivated. If you really want to quit, then you have to keep your eyes on the prize. Remind yourself why you want to quit, whether it's to improve your health, your thinking, your social life, or your overall perspective on life, and stay focused on that goal like a laser. Write it down and tape it above your desk, keep an index card with your motives in your pocket, or just keep your goals in an accessible place that you can easily reach whenever you're losing steam.
    • Whenever you're having a moment of weakness, consider all of the things you can do once you stop smoking for good. You'll feel more active, more energetic, and more motivated to do all of the things you want to do.

Community Q&A

Add New Question
  • Is it normal to have migraines or headaches/anxiety after quitting?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Yes, headaches often accompany withdrawal, probably due to the neurological absence of THC in your brain.
  • I have recently quit smoking after about 17 years. I would only eat when high. My question is, how will my appetite be now?
    wikiHow Contributor
    You will not be as hungry in general at first and may feel some nausea. However, it will get better and better after a couple days and should be back to about normal after two weeks.
  • Why won't the power of suggestion work on me to help me stop smoking?
    wikiHow Contributor
    An internal battle is not as influenced by external means. It helps but doesn't "work" like interpreted. Willpower is the way of finding strength within yourself.
  • Are there any spiritual means to stop smoking?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Some find many answers while in the altered state. Many keep returning to it to experience something new and exciting, the conversations, bizarre ideas. It becomes a subconscious go-to, setting off the balance, forgetting the importance of a clear, sober mind.
  • Is overthinking a symptom of quitting?
    wikiHow Contributor
    It is possible to experience an increase in overthinking when smoking and a few weeks after quitting.
  • How can I stop smoking, but still be motivated to sing?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Focus on why you started to sing in the first place. Your voice doesn't sound different when you're high. At least not to anyone but you. So it should just be about the passion level. Singing may even help you with anxiety while quitting.
  • How do I get some sleep? Last time I quit, it took 5 weeks until I could sleep properly.
    wikiHow Contributor
    Try meditation, yoga, working out, or soothing baths. Try drinking chamomile or warm milk before bed. Keep active and busy during the day so your body will be naturally tired at the end of the day. Avoid electronic screens and bright lights for at least an hour before bed. If all else fails, taking some melatonin before bed should help you fall asleep.
  • Will lost brain cells recover after I quit smoking?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Lost brain cells will recover. It will take a few months before you start feeling your normal self again, however.
  • How do I sleep without weed?
    wikiHow Contributor
    There are many options for sleeping at night without the aid of marijuana. Perhaps have a glass of warm milk or maybe some warm chamomile, lavender, or herbal tea. Or take a shower to relax the body into sleep.
  • What is the most effective way to try to get a loved one to quit?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Drug addictions can ruin relationships over a period of time. Be open and honest with your loved one. Tell them how their addiction makes them feel. You can also do some research on the repercussions of smoking pot/weed or specific examples you have experienced with them.
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  • You have to want to quit before you can. Weigh the benefits of quitting against the benefits of consumption; find something about sobriety that is appealing to you, and make it your goal.
  • Write down things that you will soon be able to afford with your spare cash, and keep reading them.
  • Twenty minutes exercise during periods of intense withdrawal can ease symptoms.
  • Sleep most of the time in the beginning stages if you can get away with it.
  • Look around on the internet for site's containing information about Cannabis use and dependency. Reading about other peoples experiences can help give you an idea of how to tackle your addiction.
  • Quitting cold- turkey is the most effective.
  • If your friends smoke weed, don't hang around with them. It will prevent your friends from pressuring you to smoke again.
  • Chat about wanting to stop with people who do smoke, their answers may help you succeed, and make you show them it can be done.
  • Try autosuggestion. Think repeatedly "I will quit smoking weed." See How to Use Autosuggestion.
  • A workout program is a good motivating, structured system to keep you on track and help produce endocannabinoids that your body is used to getting from smoking.
  • Think of a loved one and any time the craving is there picture them and tell them repeatedly that you will beat it.
  • Think of how much healthier your body, mind, brain and the rest will be after you've quit.


  • Limit contact and time spent around people who continue to indulge. Even though they may be your friends, peer pressure is often a major issue with quitting cannabis.

Article Info

Categories: Drug Addictions

In other languages:

Italiano: Smettere di Fumare Marijuana, Español: dejar de fumar marihuana, Português: Deixar de Fumar Maconha, Français: arrêter de fumer du cannabis, Deutsch: Aufhören Marihuana zu rauchen, Nederlands: Stoppen met blowen, 中文: 戒除大麻, Čeština: Jak přestat kouřit trávu

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