constipate

verb

con·​sti·​pate ˈkän(t)-stə-ˌpāt How to pronounce constipate (audio)
constipated; constipating

transitive verb

1
: to cause constipation in
2
: to make immobile, inactive, or dull : stultify
so much clutter … will tend to constipate the novel's working orderThe Times Literary Supplement (London)

Examples of constipate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Drink adequate amounts of fluids: People who drink the least are more likely to be constipated, Gomez said. Sherri Gordon, Health, 14 June 2023 If you’re constipated and can’t poop, pressure from the unrelieved waste could be pressing on those nerves, causing those sore testicles. Elizabeth Millard, Men's Health, 31 Mar. 2023 Nowinski’s experience provides a glimpse into how the shortage is constipating companies behind the scenes. Jen Wieczner, Fortune, 18 May 2020 Officially, encopresis is a physical and psychological state in which a child who is often constipated begins to associate pooping with pain. Lizzie Skurnick, New York Times, 17 Apr. 2020 If your child is frequently constipated while potty training, consult with your pediatrician. Dina Dimaggio, New York Times, 15 Apr. 2020 Having been intermittently constipated for most of my life, even that seemed ambitious. Julie Schott, The Cut, 19 Mar. 2018 Obviously men can be constipated too, but women are much more likely to be constipated than men. Mary Allen, Allure, 6 Sep. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'constipate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Medieval Latin constipatus, past participle of constipare, from Latin, to crowd together, from com- + stipare to pack tight — more at stiff

First Known Use

1533, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of constipate was in 1533

Dictionary Entries Near constipate

Cite this Entry

“Constipate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/constipate. Accessed 22 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

constipate

verb
con·​sti·​pate ˈkän(t)-stə-ˌpāt How to pronounce constipate (audio)
constipated; constipating
: to cause constipation in

Medical Definition

constipate

transitive verb
con·​sti·​pate ˈkän(t)-stə-ˌpāt How to pronounce constipate (audio)
constipated; constipating
: to make costive : cause constipation in

More from Merriam-Webster on constipate

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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