allergy

noun
al·ler·gy | \ˈa-lər-jē \
plural allergies

Definition of allergy 

1 : altered bodily reactivity (such as hypersensitivity) to an antigen in response to a first exposure a bee venom allergy so severe that a second sting may be fatal

2 : exaggerated or pathological immunological reaction (as by sneezing, difficult breathing, itching, or skin rashes) to substances, situations, or physical states that are without comparable effect on the average individual

3 : medical practice concerned with allergies

4 : a feeling of antipathy or aversion

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of allergy in a Sentence

Many people have some form of allergy. independent-minded people who seem to have an allergy to any control from the government

Recent Examples on the Web

File this one under terrifying news for allergy season. USA TODAY, "Is your salad safe? The romaine lettuce E. coli outbreak hits 29 states," 9 May 2018 Some experts believe the spring allergy season may be shorter but more intense this year, too. Jessica Leigh Mattern, Country Living, "Get Ready Folks, Allergy Season Will Be at Its Worst Later This Month," 13 Apr. 2018 As the first official day of spring has passed, allergy season is upon us. Sonja Haller, azcentral, "National Puppy Day 2018: Pet deals you need in your life for your little fluff of cuteness," 22 Mar. 2018 Specializes in human, animal and drug allergies, hay fever and travel vaccinations. Peggy Siegal, Town & Country, "This Underground Plastic Surgery Guide Is the Talk of the Upper East Side," 20 Nov. 2017 Some studies show that halotherapy, or salt therapy, eases symptoms for those suffering from a variety of health issues such as allergies, asthma and skin disorders. Zahria Rogers, The Courier-Journal, "Concierge IV hydration therapy service seeks to rehydrate Louisville," 12 July 2018 They are trained not to approach anyone in case a person has allergies or is scared of dogs. Lisa Maria Garza, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Downtown Trinity Lutheran Church offers 'Peace' through trained Golden Retriever," 1 July 2018 Less exposure to this bacteria and other environmental factors may lead to allergies, asthma and autoimmune disorders. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Your Bed Is Dirtier Than a Chimp’s," 18 May 2018 Angioedema has many forms and can be caused by an allergy or a medication, among other things. Jenna Birch, Health.com, "I Woke Up With Eye Bags So Swollen I Could Barely See—and Doctors Had No Idea Why," 9 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'allergy.' 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 allergy

1908, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for allergy

German Allergie, from all- + Greek ergon work — more at work

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about allergy

Statistics for allergy

Last Updated

16 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for allergy

The first known use of allergy was in 1908

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for allergy

allergy

noun

English Language Learners Definition of allergy

: a medical condition that causes someone to become sick after eating, touching, or breathing something that is harmless to most people

allergy

noun
al·ler·gy | \ˈa-lər-jē \
plural allergies

Kids Definition of allergy

: a condition in which a person is made sick by something that is harmless to most people

allergy

noun
al·ler·gy | \ˈal-ər-jē \
plural allergies

Medical Definition of allergy 

1 : altered bodily reactivity (as hypersensitivity) to an antigen in response to a first exposure his bee-venom allergy may render a second sting fatal

2 : exaggerated or pathological reaction (as by sneezing, respiratory embarrassment, itching, or skin rashes) to substances, situations, or physical states that are without comparable effect on the average individual

3 : medical practice concerned with allergies

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on allergy

What made you want to look up allergy? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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