The importance of knowing current drug slang
The central way to prevent drug abuse is with responsible education. By cultivating an awareness of what drugs are and the harm they can cause, you can work to prevent what may at first seem like harmless experimentation, but will lead to dangerous, compulsive addiction.
However, drug use has a culture around it that frequently glamorizes itself, making it seem fun, cool, and helpful to the user in building creativity or numbing pain. Drug abuse prevention programs seek to counteract these messages, communicating the truth about the dangers behind these substances, and in so doing, stop substance abuse before it starts.
According to a study by the United Nations' Office on Drugs and Crime, by stopping teenagers from experimenting with substances, effective drug education programs can save up to $10 in social costs for every dollar they spend. Thus, communicating about the realties of substance abuse should be an important part of every child's education.
Part of this education must be rooted in an understanding of drug culture, aware of the messages given about drug use, and then counteracting these messages with the truth. The slang terms for drug use can be a very telling window into how drugs are perceived by users and sellers, and so knowing these terms can be a very effective way of understanding, and then deconstructing, the messages that encourage drug use.
In addition, slang terms are designed to give drug use a sense of secrecy, so that its use can go undecided by parents. Knowledge of this slang can help parents be more aware of their children's drug use, or curiosity about drug use, allowing them to be more directly involved.
Popular slang terms for commonly abused drugs:
Dextromethorphan – a common ingredient in cough syrup, which is commonly abused by teens because of its high levels of availability. It can become an hallucinogen if consumed at high levels. According to research from the staff at WebMD, some terms include, Candy, Dex, DM, Drex, Red Devils, Robo, Rojo, Skittles, Tussin, Velvet, Poor Man's X, and Vitamin D. Users are called syrup heads, and said to be dexting or robotripping.
Ketamine – intended as an animal anesthetic, used for hallucinations and euphoria. Called K, Special K, or other terms with the letter "K." Also referenced it's relationship to other illicit drugs, such as new ecstasy, psychedelic heroin, and super acid.
Methamphetamine - a drug that can dramatically increase energy levels and is highly addictive. Some terms include meth, crystal, chalk, ice, and glass.
Heroin – derived from morphine, in it's most powerful and dangerous form. Antifreeze, many words derived from the letter "H" including horse and Big H, Kunk, poison, skag, smack, sweet dreams, tar, and train.
Cocaine – After alcohol and marijuana, the third most abused drug by teens. Some terms include snow, Charlie, crack, coke, dust, flake, freebase, lady, nose candy, powder, rock, rails, snowbirds, toot, white, and yahoo.
Marijuana – without a doubt the most widespread illicit drug among teens. Has a wide variety of slang terms that can be viewed on this chart. Some of them include mixing it with other drugs, increasing the potency and effects of both, often to uncontrollable rates.
Methylenedioxymethamphetamine – MDMA, tablets without any recognized legitimate medical use, produces feeling of euphoria at low doses, hallucinations at higher doses, one of the more popular drugs associated with the nightclub and rave scenes. Popular slang terms include X, Adam, E, bean, clarity, essence, lovers speed, roll, Stacy, and XTC. A recently emerging drug called "Molly" is said to be a more pure and potent form of MDMA, but is in fact often an unknown, toxic mix of chemicals that have even stronger effects.