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impair

play
verb im·pair \im-ˈper\

Simple Definition of impair

  • : to make (something) weaker or worse

Full Definition of impair

  1. transitive verb
  2. :  to damage or make worse by or as if by diminishing in some material respect <his health was impaired by overwork> <the strike seriously impaired community services>

im·pair·er noun
im·pair·ment play \-mənt\ noun

Examples of impair

  1. Smoking can impair your health.

  2. Drinking impairs a person's ability to think clearly.

  3. His memory was so impaired by age that he often forgot where he was.



Origin of impair

Middle English empeiren, from Anglo-French empeirer, from Vulgar Latin *impejorare, from Latin in- + Late Latin pejorare to make worse — more at pejorative


First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of impair

injure, harm, hurt, damage, impair, mar mean to affect injuriously. injure implies the inflicting of anything detrimental to one's looks, comfort, health, or success <badly injured in an accident>. harm often stresses the inflicting of pain, suffering, or loss <careful not to harm the animals>. hurt implies inflicting a wound to the body or to the feelings <hurt by their callous remarks>. damage suggests injury that lowers value or impairs usefulness <a table damaged in shipping>. impair suggests a making less complete or efficient by deterioration or diminution <years of smoking had impaired his health>. mar applies to injury that spoils perfection (as of a surface) or causes disfigurement <the text is marred by many typos>.


IMPAIR Defined for Kids

impair

play
verb im·pair \im-ˈper\

Definition of impair

im·pairedim·pair·ing

  1. :  to make less (as in quantity, value, or strength) or worse :  damage <Smoking can impair your health.>




Medical Dictionary

impair

play
transitive verb im·pair \im-ˈpa(ə)r, -ˈpe(ə)r\

Medical Definition of impair

  1. :  to damage or make worse by or as if by diminishing in some material respect <his health was impaired by overwork>

  2. im·pair·ment \-ˈpa(ə)r-mənt\play noun





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