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Common Street Names and Nicknames for Heroin

Heroin is a highly addictive opioid drug. While pharmaceutical-grade heroin (called diamorphine) continues to be used in other parts of the world, all heroin in the United States is illegally manufactured—synthesized from morphine for illicit, recreational use. Heroin produces euphoria, drowsiness, and pain relief.

There are many varieties of heroin, which vary based on the different geographic locations in which they are produced and from which region of the country they are made available for street purchase. These variations include white, brown, and black tar heroin.1 All forms of heroin are typically injected, snorted, or smoked.1

What Are the Street Names and Slang Terms for Heroin?

It’s important to note that heroin is often called many different names, depending on the location and culture of the user. If you’re a concerned parent or friend, you should be aware of the different street names for heroin.

Common slang terms for heroin include:2

  • Smack.
  • Dope.
  • Mud.
  • Horse.
  • Skag.
  • Junk.
  • H.
  • Black tar.
  • Black pearl.
  • Brown sugar.
  • Witch hazel.
  • Birdie powder.
  • Dragon.
  • Hero.
  • White stuff.
  • China white.
  • Boy.
  • Chiva.
  • Mexican horse.
  • Pluto.
  • Skunk.
  • Number 2.

Spanish Names for Heroin

The Spanish language has alternate names for heroin, including:

  • Bombita.
  • Chicle.
  • Gato.
  • La Buena.
  • Tiger.
  • Zoquete.
  • Vidrio.
  • Caballo.
  • Carne.
  • Carga.

This is not an exhaustive list, however, since the names of heroin differ by country and geographical region. Of course, these slang terms change frequently — drug users and dealers come up with new street names in efforts to thwart the authorities.

Common Names for Heroin Mixed with Other Drugs

Heroin can be combined with a number of other drugs, including marijuana, crack, LSD, cold medicine, ecstasy, methamphetamines, cocaine, and morphine to create combinations known as “chocolate chip cookies,” “woo-woo,” “beast,” “boy-girl,” “snowball,” “cheese,” “Cotton Brothers,” “New Jack Swing,” “LBJ,” and “meth speed ball.”

Below are some additional potential combinations, along with common street designations:2

  • Heroin and marijuana: A-bomb or atom bomb.
  • Heroin and Xanax: Chocolate bars.
  • Heroin and crack cocaine: Dragon rock, Primo.
  • Heroin and cocaine: Dynamite.
  • Heroin, cocaine, marijuana: El diablo.
  • Heroin and ecstasy: H-bomb.
  • Heroin, LSD, PCP: LBJ
  • Heroin and LSD: Neon nod.
  • Heroin and methamphetamine: Screwball.

When used alone, heroin can have deadly consequences, but when combined with other drugs, the risk of adverse effects and overdose increases greatly.

Heroin users may take benzodiazepines, which are prescribed to treat anxiety disorders, to intensify the opioid effects or to ease unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.3 The two most common concurrently misused drugs associated with heroin overdose are alcohol and benzodiazepines.3

All three substances are central nervous system (CNS) depressants, and all are capable of slowing both breathing and heart rate. When two CNS depressants are combined, the heart and respiratory rate can slow to a lethal degree — leading to coma and death.

Why Is It Important to Know Heroin Slang Terms?

As a concerned parent or loved one, it’s important to know the slang terms for heroin because your addicted loved one may use street names to avoid detection when talking to friends about an illegal opioid. If you are educated on and aware of the different names for heroin, then you’ll be more equipped to identify your loved one’s heroin misuse before it leads to dependence and addiction.

Having open communication is key to keeping your loved one healthy and drug-free. Many people, especially teenagers, are unaware of the potential dangers of heroin, so make sure you talk to them about the harmful consequences of not only heroin, but all drugs.

The purity and, consequently, the relative toxicity of today’s heroin seems to be increasing, so people no longer have to use a needle to get high. They can now snort it or smoke it to experience its potent effects. This decreased perception of heroin as an injection-only drug may contribute to the increase in heroin use among teens. As a drug with similar effects to widely prescribed opioid medications, teens may believe that heroin is not harmful or addictive, so it may be especially important for parents today to talk to their children before heroin use begins or gets out of control.

Signs of Heroin Use

When detecting heroin misuse, knowing the street names isn’t always enough. Identifying a potential addiction requires knowledge of the common signs and symptoms of misuse. These signs may include:3

  • Grades slipping.
  • Hanging out with a new group of friends.
  • Behavioral changes.
  • Depressed mood.
  • Increased absences from school or work.
  • Finding syringes, baggies, or balloons with suspicious contents.
  • Neglecting previously enjoyed activities.
  • Drowsiness.
  • Attention and memory problems.
  • Small pupils.
  • Slurred speech.
  • Impaired judgment.
  • Collapsed veins.
  • Abscesses.
  • Scars from lesions.
  • Nasal ulcerations.
  • Injuries from accidents or violence.

At first, it may be difficult to come to terms with these signs in yourself or someone you love. But acceptance and change can only come with acknowledgement of the problem. If someone you love exhibits any number of these signs and you suspect heroin misuse, call our helpline at to speak with an admissions navigator about recovery options that can help you overcome this addiction.

Finding Heroin Treatment Centers

Looking for a treatment center for heroin addiction can be an overwhelming task. At American Addiction Centers (AAC), we make getting into treatment easier with the help of our admissions navigators. Our caring staff can speak with you about your treatment options as well as payment concerns.

The treatment directory is an easy-to-use tool to help you find a rehab facility that fits your needs or desired geographic location. This directory also allows you to narrow your search to age-specific treatments and levels of care.

If you want to find a heroin rehab center, you may be wondering what to expect. The treatment process may include the following services:4,5

  • Detoxification (detox): Heroin withdrawal can be unpleasant. A recovery center will be able to provide you with medically supervised detoxification, which will create a more comfortable environment for you and alleviate unwanted symptoms.
  • Inpatient treatment: During inpatient treatment, you live at the facility for the duration of your program, which can range from 30 to 90 days, or longer if necessary. This option is beneficial for those who want to escape their heroin-using environments and focus solely on recovery.
  • Outpatient treatment: For those who can’t neglect home, school, or work obligations, outpatient treatment allows you to live at home while attending a recovery program that works with your schedule.
  • Therapy and counseling: Behavioral therapy and group counseling can provide you with the necessary coping skills needed for stressful and triggering situations.

Check Your Insurance Coverage for Heroin Rehab

As you consider your options, knowing exactly what your health insurance plan covers can give you peace of mind. You can do the work of getting and staying sober without worrying about unexpected costs or financial struggles. For more information on what your insurance plan covers, verify your insurance now.

Treatment can change a person’s life by teaching them ways to live without drugs or alcohol. If you or a loved one need help with heroin addiction, contact our caring and professional admissions navigators today to begin your recovery. Call us 24/7 for a free, private consultation at .

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