ad·​dict | \ ˈa-(ˌ)dikt How to pronounce addict (audio) \
plural addicts

Definition of addict

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one exhibiting a compulsive, chronic, physiological or psychological need for a habit-forming substance, behavior, or activity a drug addict opioid addicts a gambling addict
2 : one strongly inclined to do, use, or indulge in something repeatedly a television addict chocolate addicts


ad·​dict | \ ə-ˈdikt How to pronounce addict (audio) \
addicted; addicting; addicts

Definition of addict (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to cause addiction in (someone) addicts … find it convenient to addict several other persons— D. W. Maurer and V. H. Vogel Hard-core fitness freaks are addicting themselves to all manner of hybrid mind/body activities …— Rick Marin et al. — see also addicted, addicting

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Synonyms & Antonyms for addict

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Noun

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Examples of addict in a Sentence

Noun an inspiring story about addicts who seek help and manage to kick their habit science-fiction addicts who eagerly await each new installment in the series
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun His father, James Crouch, who went west from Texas, was described by Stanley as a hustler and a heroin addict serving time in a San Francisco prison when his son was born. Thomas Chatterton Williams, Harper's Magazine, "Solo Act," 24 Nov. 2020 By the time of the murder in 1987, Thompson was an alcoholic and drug addict. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Someone San Diego Should Know: Mancy Thompson," 20 Nov. 2020 By all insider accounts, Trump is a hardcore cable news addict. James Hibberd,, "Trump lost the 2020 election in the most ironic way possible," 7 Nov. 2020 And when this violence addict who swore off the sauce two decades earlier indulges in a wild relapse, Odenkirk’s Hutch reawakens a treacherous enemy (Aleksey Serebryakov) from his days in three-letter agencies doing off-books deeds. Dan Snierson,, "First look at Bob Odenkirk's action thriller Nobody: 'I get the s--- kicked out of me'," 12 Nov. 2020 Since her win Tuesday, Simmons said she has been swamped with calls from reporters and well-wishers, intrigued by the story of how a former drug addict and middle school dropout found the courage to rise above the odds. Washington Post, "She is a former addict and prisoner. She was just elected to the state house in Washington.," 7 Nov. 2020 And there’s a real power when that takes place between two alcoholics and two addicts, because no one understands the way another alcoholic or addict does. Rachel Hutton, Star Tribune, "Minneapolis author's experience with addiction and recovery inform a new novel," 19 Oct. 2020 Dealing with an addict in the family is, to put it mildly, challenging. Dallas News, "Estate planning around an addict: Helping without enabling a family member in need," 1 Nov. 2020 Its enormous selection of more than 400 coffees is enticing to the coffee addict who wants to try new flavors all the time. Kai Burkhardt, CNN Underscored, "The best coffee subscriptions of 2020," 29 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb First, the platforms' business models — originally designed to manipulate and addict — are the very reason that disinformation goes viral in the first place. Sally Hubbard For Cnn Business Perspectives, CNN, "Forget bias, the real danger is Big Tech's overwhelming control over speech," 28 Oct. 2020 Perpetual connectivity has led to a plethora of early social media apps that are designed to addict and distract us. Padmasree Warrior, Fortune, "Stop doomscrolling on social media and read a book," 25 Oct. 2020 His research indicates that for the technology or digital media addict the dopamine release in the brain is similar to that of drugs and alcohol. David L. Coddon, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Arts & Culture Newsletter: Getting our Pearl Jam fix," 8 Oct. 2020 Miranda, by then, was moved out of the little cape and the rumor about town was that she was addicted to drugs and living in Newark, under the bridge. Lisa Taddeo, Harper's Magazine, "Padua, 1966," 30 Mar. 2020 After so many experiments, the Iowa Gambling Task’s outcomes are pretty well understood for some groups, like people with otherwise healthy brains who aren’t addicted to drugs or—just guessing—gambling. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "Quantum Mechanics Explains Why You Do Dumb Things," 29 Jan. 2020 There are people who are addicted, in desperate need of treatment, who are stuck in prisons and jails. The New Yorker, "Cory Booker Considers His Presidential Prospects," 28 Sep. 2019 The woman said the man had been addicted to pills in the past and had served prison time related to his addiction. Bob Sandrick, cleveland, "Man, woman with grab bags of drugs lead Berea police on high-speed chase," 23 Apr. 2020 Play this for 1 min and see why everyone is addicted! Houston Chronicle, "These are the most venomous animals in Texas," 13 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'addict.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of addict


1899, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1612, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for addict


derivative of addict entry 2


earlier, "to give over, surrender, apply or devote (oneself) habitually," borrowed from Latin addictus, past participle of addīcere "to assign (property), make over, hand over, surrender," from ad- ad- + dīcere "to speak, say" — more at diction

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Time Traveler for addict

Time Traveler

The first known use of addict was in 1612

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Statistics for addict

Last Updated

4 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Addict.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2020.

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More Definitions for addict


How to pronounce addict (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of addict

: a person who is not able to stop taking drugs : a person who is addicted to drugs
informal : a person who likes or enjoys something very much and spends a large amount of time doing it, watching it, etc.


ad·​dict | \ ˈa-ˌdikt How to pronounce addict (audio) \

Kids Definition of addict

1 : a person who is not able to stop taking drugs a heroin addict
2 : a person who likes or enjoys something excessively a chocolate addict
ad·​dict | \ ə-ˈdikt How to pronounce addict (audio) \

Medical Definition of addict

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to cause addiction in (someone)


ad·​dict | \ ˈad-(ˌ)ikt How to pronounce addict (audio) \

Medical Definition of addict (Entry 2 of 2)

: one exhibiting a compulsive, chronic, physiological or psychological need for a habit-forming substance, behavior, or activity a drug addict opioid addicts a gambling addict

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ad·​dict | \ ə-ˈdikt How to pronounce addict (audio) \

Legal Definition of addict

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to cause (a person) to become physiologically dependent upon a drug


ad·​dict | \ ˈa-dikt How to pronounce addict (audio) \

Legal Definition of addict (Entry 2 of 2)

: one who is addicted to a drug

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