allergy

noun
al·​ler·​gy | \ ˈa-lər-jē How to pronounce allergy (audio) \
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

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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 Despite the risks, seasonal allergy sufferers are likely to welcome a strong, drenching rain after a pollen count over 4,600 on Friday. Henri Hollis, ajc, "SATURDAY’S WEATHER-TRAFFIC: Drenching rain could bring relief from pollen," 10 Apr. 2021 Sometimes people can use regular laundry detergent to get allergens out of their clothes and reduce their allergy symptoms. Laura Wheatman Hill, chicagotribune.com, "Which laundry detergent is best for seasonal allergies?," 10 Apr. 2021 Four fan speeds, whisper-quiet operation, and CARB compliance make this one an especially good pick for allergy sufferers. Popular Science, "Best air purifiers: Cleaner indoor air at the push of a button," 15 Mar. 2021 Thanks to a wet spring in the Northeast and Midwest, many allergy sufferers are complaining of the worst season in years. Gina Cherundolo, Scientific American, "Is the Current Weather Affecting Your Health?," 9 June 2011 The allergy season typically starts in mid-February. Jay R. Jordan, Chron, "Bless you, Houston.," 29 Mar. 2021 Washing your rugs regularly can also reduce dust and allergens and control asthma and allergy symptoms, said Kenneth Mendez, CEO and president of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Hanna Horvath, NBC News, "The 6 best washable rugs of 2021, according to cleaning experts," 16 Mar. 2021 This time of year also means the start of allergy season for Greater Cincinnati. Sarah Brookbank, The Enquirer, "The first day of spring is coming and so are high pollen counts," 18 Mar. 2021 Specialty replacement filters include a pet-allergy option and a toxin absorber for, particularly smoky or smoggy areas. Popular Science, "Best air purifiers: Cleaner indoor air at the push of a button," 15 Mar. 2021

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.

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First Known Use of allergy

1908, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for allergy

borrowed from German Allergie "heightened reaction to an antigen to which an individual has been previously exposed," from all- all- + -ergie, in Energie energy, or directly from its source, Greek -ergeia, taken to mean "action, response"

Note: The term was introduced, along with allergisch allergic and Allergen allergen, by the German physician Clemens Peter Freiherr von Pirquet (1874-1929) in "Allergie," Münchener medizinische Wochenschrift, 53. Jahrgang, Nr. 30 (July 24, 1906), pp. 1457-58.

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Learn More about allergy

Time Traveler for allergy

Time Traveler

The first known use of allergy was in 1908

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Statistics for allergy

Last Updated

15 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Allergy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/allergy. Accessed 21 Apr. 2021.

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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 How to pronounce allergy (audio) \
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 How to pronounce allergy (audio) \
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

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