How to Decipher Drug Slang

Written by ehow legal editor
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It's nearly impossible to keep up with the street names and slang for illegal drug use in the United States. Some slang is regional, some outdated or brand new. Below is a helpful guide to the most common drug slang from everything to hallucinogens to stimulants.

Skill level:
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Instructions

    Slang for Stimulants

  1. 1

    Learn common street names for the dangerous illegal stimulant cocaine. It can be known as coke, crack, blow, big C, Lady, nose candy, powder, rocks, snow, snowbirds and white. Crack cocaine, a more dangerous derivative of cocaine, is called crack, cookie, freebase and rock.

  2. 2

    Know slang for Methamphetamine, another dangerous illegal stimulant used in epidemic proportions in some areas. It is known as crank, crystal, crystal meth, crystal methadrine, glass, ice and speed.

  3. 3

    Remember that there are also many prescription drugs and over-the-counter drugs used illegally. For example, amphetamines prescribed for ADHD, obesity and other problems also have street names such as black beauties, bumblebees, co-pilots, crosses, hearts, footballs, pep pills, speed, uppers and ups.

  4. 4

    Become familiar with other prescribed or over-the-counter stimulants used illegally such as ritalin, cylert, didrex, voranil, sandrax, plegine pre-state and preludin.

    Slang for Depressants

  1. 1

    Remember the tranquilizers or Benzodiazepines, which have been abused for decades. Their proprietary names such as valium, ativan, halcion and librium are familiar. These types of prescription drugs, when used illegally, are most commonly called roofies, tranks, xanax. The slang terms ludes, quaaludes or sopors are used for Methaqualone.

  2. 2

    Pay careful attention to some highly addictive prescription depressants that fall into the class of Barbiturates, including phenobarbital, nembutal and seconal. The slang for these types of drugs includes barbs, blue devils, downers, red devils, yellow devils or yellows.

  3. 3

    Hear from teens about the latest fads in substance abuse. Nitrate products are abused regularly with sometimes fatal results. The slang for these substances includes laughing gas or whippets for nitrous oxide, poppers or snappers for Amyl Nitrate and for Butyl Nitrate, bolt, bullet, climax, locker room and rush.

  4. 4

    Familiarize yourself with more recent substances being abused, which are easy for anyone to obtain including teens. These include hydrocarbons and chloro-hydrocarbons, such as aerosol sprays, cleaning fluids and solvents.

    Slang for Hallucinogens

  1. 1

    Recall decades old and learn new drug slang for smoked hallucinogens such as marijuana and hashish (hash). Marijuana has many slang names, such as blunt, dope, ganja, grass, herb, mary jane, pot, reefer, smoke, sinsemilla, urb and weed.

  2. 2

    Know slang for oral hallucinogens such as Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), Psilocybin and Mescaline. Street names for LSD include acid, microdot, blue heaven, white lightening and sugar cubes. For Psilocybin, common slang is 'shrooms, magic mushrooms and purple passion. The slang for Mescaline includes mesc, buttons, cactus and peyote.

  3. 3

    Learn slang for a more dangerous hallucinogen (really an amphetamine with some psychedelic properties), phencyclidine. It is referred to as PCP, angel dust, boar, hog, love boat and lovely.

  4. 4

    Be aware of amphetamine variants such as MDMA, MDA, DOB and DOM. Slang terms include Adam, Ecstasy, STP Essence and XTP.

    Slang for Narcotics

  1. 1

    Recall long used analgesic opiods, such as morphine and opium. In slang morphine translates to pectoral syrup and opium becomes paragoric, dover's powder or parepectolin.

  2. 2

    Learn drug slang for heroin, a highly addictive narcotic, which is called smack, horse, big H, black tar, junk, mud and brown sugar.

  3. 3

    Be aware of other analgesic narcotics, usually prescribed but also used illegally. These include fentanyl, meperidine and codeine, empirin and Robitussin A-C.

  4. 4

    Remember that a lot of narcotics being abused today are in over-the-counter medications, such as allergy and cold medicines.

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