Simple Definition of desensitize
: to cause (someone or something) to react less to or be less affected by something : to cause (someone or something) to be less sensitive
Full Definition of desensitize
1 : to make (a sensitized or hypersensitive individual) insensitive or nonreactive to a sensitizing agent
2 : to make emotionally insensitive or callous; specifically : to extinguish an emotional response (as of fear, anxiety, or guilt) to stimuli that formerly induced it
Examples of desensitize in a sentence
The shot will help to desensitize the nerve.
First Known Use of desensitize
Rhymes with desensitize
accessorize, acclimatize, actualize, aerobicize, aestheticize, Africanize, allegorize, alphabetize, analogize, anatomize, anesthetize, animalize, annualize, antagonize, anthologize, anticlockwise, apologize, apostatize, apostrophize, arabicize, aromatize, automatize, bureaucratize, cannibalize, capitalize, categorize, catheterize, catholicize, characterize, collectivize, commercialize, commoditize, communalize, computerize, conservatize, containerize, contrariwise, conveyorize, cosmeticize, counterclockwise, criminalize, cross-fertilize, cut down to size, decentralize, decolonize, de-emphasize, de-energize, defeminize, deformalize, deglamorize, dehumanize, deionize, demagnetize, demobilize, democratize, demoralize, denationalize, deodorize, depersonalize, depolarize, depressurize, destabilize, destigmatize, detribalize, devitalize, diabolize, digitalize, disenfranchise, disorganize, economize, emblematize, emotionalize, epitomize, epoxidize, eroticize, eternalize, evangelize, extemporize, externalize, familiarize, fanaticize, fictionalize, floor exercise, fool's paradise, formularize, free enterprise, gelatinize, generalize, geologize, Hispanicize, historicize, homogenize, hospitalize, hypothesize, idealize, illegalize, immobilize, immortalize, impersonalize, Indianize, indigenize, infantilize, initialize, internalize, italicize, legitimize, liberalize, literalize, lobotomize, lysogenize, macadamize, marginalize, metabolize, metastasize, militarize, mineralize, monopolize, mythologize, nationalize, naturalize, parenthesize, philosophize, poeticize, politicize, popularize, prioritize, proselytize, radicalize, reorganize, revitalize, ritualize, romanticize, secularize, self-fertilize, sensualize, sexualize, sovietize, subjectivize, suburbanize, subvocalize, systematize, temporalize, theologize, traditionalize, trivialize, ventriloquize, visualize
Medical Definition of desensitize
desensitized also British desensitised; desensitizing also British desensitising
: to make less sensitive : reduce sensitivity in <desensitize a nerve with a local anesthetic>: asa: to make (a sensitized or hypersensitive individual) insensitive or nonreactive to a sensitizing agentb: to extinguish an emotional response (as of fear, anxiety, or guilt) to stimuli which formerly induced it : make emotionally insensitive <evidence that violence on television desensitizes children to actual violence—Stephanie Harrington>c: to decrease a response (as of a cell receptor) progressively following prolonged exposure to a stimulus <formation of cAMP was reduced significantly in desensitized cells and remained low in the continuous presence of agonist—S. M. Nilius et al>
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Medical Dictionary: Definition of "desensitize"
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