One of the challenges of parenting today is understanding the lingo kids use. In many cases, this lingo is harmless pop-culture noise and nothing to be concerned about. However, erring on the side of caution is always a good idea when it comes to teens, especially when this “lingo” could be related to drugs.
Educating yourself is the best way to know if your teens are talking about something harmless or dangerous. To that end, we’ve compiled a glossary of sorts, detailing some of the more popular nicknames and related terms teens use for common drugs. As you learn, bear in mind that new drugs frequently pop up, and the slang terms kids use for them may change as well.
- Dexing: abusing cough syrup. Also called robotripping or robodosing (after the brand name Robitussin). Cough syrup abuse is becoming more and more common due to its hallucinogenic properties in high doses.
- Candy Flipping: Combining LSD and ecstasy.
- Candy: over-the-counter cough syrups (usually containing dextromethorphan). Also called velvet, dex, DM, red devils, robo, skittles, tussin, and vitamin D.
- Special K: Normally used as an anesthetic, this is a club drug that can cause hallucinations and euphoria. Also might be called vitamin K, breakfast cereal, new ecstasy, psychedelic heroin, super acid, or cat valium.
- Weed: common street name for marijuana, but it’s also called grass, gang, herb, joint, reefer, buds, stinkweed, nuggets, hay, rope, boom, ashes, broccoli, burrito and more.
- Crank: slang for methamphetamine. Also referred to as speed, chalk, fire, ice, and glass.
- Crunk: getting drunk and high simultaneously
- Snow: cocaine. Also Charlie, crack, just, flake, nose candy, yahoo, rock, or toot. Cocaine is a strong third-place drug for teens, after alcohol and marijuana.
- X: ecstasy. Also called Adam, clarity, essence, lovers speed, roll, stays.
- Antifreeze: heroin. Also referred to as Big H, brown sugar, H, horse, skag, smack, tar, or dope.
- Kibbles and Bits: Ritalin (ADHD prescription). Also called pineapple.
- Roofies: the date rape drug rohypnol. Synonyms include La Rocha, roaches, rope, and R-2.
- Georgia Home Boy: GHB, another date-rape drug. Other names include liquid E and scoop.
- Cheese: mix of black tar heroin and diphenhydramine-containing medications such as Tylenol PM. Called cheese because of it’s resemblance to grated parmesan.
- Vike: prescription painkillers like Vicodin, Codeine, Morphine, Percocet, or OxyContin. Also called OC, tuss, big boys, percs, morph, or kicker.
As you can see, there may be several nicknames for each drug. When you add in the power of the Internet and social media, you have quick-morphing slang that can change over a short period of time. For parents, this makes it even more important to keep an eye on what your kids are doing, and make sure they know you’re informed. Have open conversations with your kids, helping them understand the dangers of these drugs — despite the funny nicknames.
If you hear these slang terms kicked around between your teens and their friends, talk to your kids and make sure you learn everything you can about what is really going on. If you suspect a problem, don’t hesitate to ask for help from an outside source that can help you determine the extent of the issue. Caring professionals can guide you through any actions you need to take.