What Emojis Do Teens Use When Texting About Drugs?

What Emojis Do Teens Use When Texting About Drugs?
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We all know that teens have their own language when texting each other, but do you know what all of your teen’s texts really mean? Many teens use emojis when texting about drugs so that their parents won’t catch on to what they’re saying.

A study on children and technology found that an astonishing 91% of teens engage in conversations surrounding drugs and/or alcohol. [1] Whether they’re literally spelling it out or using emojis to code their conversations, the conversations are happening, and parents need to be aware.

How do teens text? What emojis indicate drugs?

We’ll dive deep into the world of teens’ texts about drugs and the emojis they’re using so that parents can be in the loop. If your teen’s texts lead you to believe your teen is having a problem with drugs and alcohol, we’ll let you know how Clear Life Recovery can help.

Decoding Emojis Teens Use When Texting about Drugs

Teens who text with emojis to talk about drugs have become so prevalent that earlier this year, the Drug Enforcement Agency released a parental guide called the “Emoji Drug Code.” This guide helps parents crack the code of the emojis their children use to communicate about drugs. [2]

Here are some emojis to watch for that could indicate your teen is texting about drugs:

  • Pill (💊) – symbolizes drugs like Percocet, Adderall, or Oxycodone
  • Snake or Brown Heart (🐍🤎) – typically symbolizes heroin
  • Needle (💉) – this can refer to anything injectable like heroin
  • Palm or Pine Tree (🌴🌲) – this is used for marijuana
  • Gas Pump (⛽) – often refers to high-potency marijuana
  • Snowflake or Eight Ball (❄🎱) – used to talk about cocaine
  • Cookie symbol (🍪) – refers to large batches of drugs
  • Bomb or Rocket (💣🚀) – High-potency drugs

Emojis for Drugs - what emojis teens use in reference to drugs

  • Blue heart or crystal ball (💙🔮) – these are used for meth
  • Heart, lightning bolt, or red X (♥⚡❌) – all of these can symbolize MDMA and mollies
  • Mushroom (🍄) – used for psychedelic mushrooms
  • Purple heart or grapes (💜🍇) – can indicate cough syrup (some teens overuse this to get high)
  • Plug (🔌) – can refer to a drug dealer or someone who can “hook you up” with drugs
  • Cigarette or Smoke Cloud (🚬💨) – this can reference smoking a joint
  • Money bag, Credit card (💰💳) – this may advertise a drug deal

Emojis for drugs - teens

Besides these popular emojis, teens can also refer to drugs by using certain colors in their texts. Green can refer to marijuana, while white often refers to cocaine. Any of these emojis being used on your teen’s text messages could be a red flag that there is some type of drug activity going on.

Terms Teens Use When Texting About Drugs

Teens may also use certain “code words” to accompany their emojis when talking about drugs. If you saw the words by themselves, you may think it was just some type of nonsense. But these words could be their way of talking about drugs without literally spelling out the words.

Here are words to look out for that may indicate your teen is talking about drugs. [3]

ADD and ADHD Medications:

  • Abby
  • Diet Coke
  • Pineapple
  • Rids
  • Smarties
  • Study buddies


  • Crosses
  • Geeked up
  • Pastas


  • Chicken feed
  • Chris
  • Cold one
  • Ice
  • Ice water
  • Paint
  • Small girl
  • Yellow cake

Text slang words for drugs

If you notice these words in your teen’s texts, you’ll want to talk to them and seek professional treatment if they have a drug problem. Detecting any issues or substance abuse disorders early on can help them enter a drug addiction treatment program to begin a sober life.

Seeking Drug Treatment for Your Teen at Clear Life Recovery

When you need help talking to your teen about drug treatment, Clear Life Recovery is here to help. Our team has the experience necessary to get your teen on the path to sobriety.

At Clear Life Recovery, we know that a teen’s substance abuse disorder can differ from an adult’s. This is why we offer a young adult rehab program to help that age group better deal with their addictions. Our program can help youth and young adults get on a healthy track and change their lives.

For more information on drug treatment programs at Clear Life Recovery, call us today or reach out to us online. Let us help your teen lead the sober life they deserve.



[1] https://www.bark.us/annual-report/

[2] https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2021-12/Emoji%20Decoded.pdf

[3] https://www.uabmedicine.org/-/texting-trouble-code-words-that-may-hint-at-teen-drug-use