TB Meaning

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What does TB mean?

TB means Throwback. It could also mean Text Back, Tuberculosis, or Terabyte.

On this page:

TB Meaning
Find out what TB means and how it is used.

TB is an abbreviation for the word “throwback”. It is often used as a hashtag either in conjunction with or as an alternative to the popular Instagram hashtag TBT.

It can also less commonly mean “text back”.

In medicine, TB is widely known as an abbreviation for tuberculosis.

TB is also an abbreviation for “terabyte”, which is a unit of measurement of data storage capacity similar to GB (gigabyte) or MB (megabyte).

Where is TB used?

TB is often used as a hashtag on Instagram. It is also sometimes used as an abbreviation on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok and other social networking sites.

TB is used on the follow platforms and places:

  • texting
  • online conversation
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Snapchat
  • TikTok
  • Twitter
An example of the abbreviation TB in a text message.
An example of the abbreviation TB in a text message.

How is TB used?

TB is simply used to mean “throwback”. While it is sometimes used in a caption, comment or message, it is often used as a hashtag similar to #TBT or #FBF.

Do people say TB out loud?

No; if they say anything at all, they’ll just say “throwback”.

Example Uses of TB

In a text message:
Wow, that photo is a real TB!

A friend responds to a text of an old photo.

On Instagram:
#TB to when we first moved in. The house looks so much different now!

Someone posts an old photo of their house on Instagram before it was renovated. Since it isn't Thursday, they used the hashtag #TB instead of #TBT.

On Instagram:
#TB to before I started working out. #skinny #shrimp #small

Someone posts a photo to Instagram showing how they looked before they began working out.

On Instagram:
A few years ago in Florida. #tb #miami #beach

An Instagram caption for a post containing photos from someone's vacation in Florida.

On Instagram:
Here's a cute #TB to when Casper was just a puppy!

Someone posts a photo of their dog as a puppy on Instagram.

In a text message:
Thanks, please tb when done

Someone asks their friend to text them back when they finish something.

On online conversation:
My great grandfather died because of TB. It's a horrible disease.

Someone talking about their great grandfather who passed away from tuberculosis.

On online conversation:
I thought 16TB would be plenty, but I already ran out of storage!

Someone underestimated how many cat videos they were going to save.

Who uses TB?

TB seems to be used as a hashtag by younger people, but not exclusively so. There are a wide range of people who use the term.

History of TB

First Use

It is hard to tell when TB was first used as an abbreviation of “throwback”, but we suspect it wasn’t until it TBT started being used on Instagram in late 2011 to early 2012. It was first defined to mean “throwback” on Urban Dictionary in 2014.

Data from Google Trends showing the popularity of searches for TB.
Data from Google Trends showing the popularity of searches for TB.

Rise in Popularity

According to Google Trends, searches for #TB began around the same time that the hashtag #TBT started being used on Instagram.

What was used before TB?

As far as we can tell: nothing. But TB was still an abbreviation for other things (e.g. tuberculosis, terabyte) way before it meant “throwback”.

Other Definitions of TB

TB can also mean:

  • Text Back
  • Tuberculosis
  • Terabyte

Text Back

We don’t see this used very often, but it is sometimes used by people when texting each other.


In medicine, TB is an abbreviation for tuberculosis, a very well known infectious disease.


You’re probably familiar with MB (megabyte) and GB (gigabyte), but how about TB? A terabyte is just the next step up!