ail·​ing | \ ˈā-liŋ How to pronounce ailing (audio) \

Definition of ailing

: having or suffering from an illness or injury providing care for his ailing mother trying to rest her ailing knee/back a person in ailing health often used figuratively an ailing companyan ailing economy

Synonyms & Antonyms for ailing



Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of ailing in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Tony Snell did not return to practice on Tuesday but his ailing ankle is improving, according to Billups. oregonlive, 27 Oct. 2021 Those additions can only help their ailing run defense. Los Angeles Times, 19 Oct. 2021 After his release, the aging Earle drives west to carry out a jewel heist at a California resort hotel for an ailing friend who bought his pardon, Big Mac ( Donald MacBride ). Kristin M. Jones, WSJ, 9 Oct. 2021 Lawyers for an ailing, elderly Iranian-American who has been detained by Iran since 2016 are appealing to the United Nations for immediate intervention to evacuate him for lifesaving emergency surgery. Camilla Schick, CBS News, 4 Oct. 2021 Situations described in court documents included ailing detainees kept near a bathroom flooded with urine and feces. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 14 Sep. 2021 The Malysas already had raised nearly half the necessary amount for Milo, a portion of that money donated from the family of another ailing Polish boy, Kubus, who died before the funds could be used for his medical needs., 11 Sep. 2021 Chandler faced adversity during the week with quarterback Blaine Hipa ailing. Richard Obert, The Arizona Republic, 10 Sep. 2021 Thanks to technology, sending money to an ailing brother in northern Mexico is even easier. Tribune News Service, Arkansas Online, 8 Sep. 2021

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

See More

First Known Use of ailing

1598, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ailing

from present participle of ail entry 1

Learn More About ailing

Dictionary Entries Near ailing




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for ailing

Last Updated

7 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ailing.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Nov. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on ailing

Nglish: Translation of ailing for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ailing for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!