ex·​po·​sure | \ik-ˈspō-zhər \

Definition of exposure 

1 : the fact or condition of being exposed: such as

a : the condition of being presented to view or made known a politician seeks a lot of exposure

b : the condition of being unprotected especially from severe weather died of exposure

c : the condition of being subject to some effect or influence risk exposure to the flu

d : the condition of being at risk of financial loss minimizes your exposure to market fluctuations also : an amount at risk

2 : the act or an instance of exposing: such as

a : disclosure of something secret tried to prevent exposure of their past

b : the treating of sensitized material (such as film) to controlled amounts of radiant energy also : the amount of such energy or length of such treatment a 3-second exposure

3a : the manner of being exposed

b : the position (as of a house) with respect to weather influences or compass points a room with a southern exposure

4 : a piece or section of sensitized material (such as film) on which an exposure is or can be made 36 exposures per roll

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Examples of exposure in a Sentence

children's exposure to violence on television He risks exposure to ridicule by saying such things in public. The candidates are competing for television exposure.
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Recent Examples on the Web

If the tariffs escalate, analysts expect dozens of companies in the S&P 500 that have significant revenue exposure to China to struggle. Michael Wursthorn, WSJ, "The Stocks on the Front Line of the Trade Fight," 5 Dec. 2018 The patient in question didn’t have any obvious exposure to lead but was known to use oral opium. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "As if heroin weren’t dangerous enough, it may come with lead poisoning," 9 Nov. 2018 Most people who have quick exposure won’t have any symptoms, Dr. Weiland says. Korin Miller, SELF, "What to Do if You Think You’ve Been Exposed to Asbestos," 20 July 2018 Already some research in rats has shown that exposure to secondhand smoke generated from marijuana affects the arteries in ways similar to tobacco smoke. Ginia Bellafante, New York Times, "Marijuana: The Signature Olfactory Experience of New York," 21 June 2018 Researchers know from decades of work that exposure to community violence can lead to emotional, social and cognitive problems. Darby Saxbe, Scientific American, "Living with Neighborhood Violence May Shape Teens’ Brains," 15 June 2018 Researchers believe this may be due to the way oral contraceptives containing estrogen suppress ovulation, which reduces your exposure to naturally occurring hormones that can affect your ovarian cancer risk, the National Cancer Institute explains. Korin Miller, SELF, "Why Is the 5-Year Survival Rate for Ovarian Cancer So Low?," 21 Nov. 2018 Our daily exposures to (or from) politics strongly affects our individual choices about whether and how to participate in politics. Jennifer Victor, Vox, "What good are elections, anyway?," 30 Oct. 2018 Your brain takes light as a cue to be awake, so keep your exposure to light to a minimum around bedtime. Suzannah Weiss, Teen Vogue, "10 Sleep Tips for College Students," 7 Sep. 2018

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

1605, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for exposure

Last Updated

13 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for exposure

The first known use of exposure was in 1605

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English Language Learners Definition of exposure

: the fact or condition of being affected by something or experiencing something : the condition of being exposed to something

: the act of revealing secrets about someone or something

: public attention and notice


ex·​po·​sure | \ik-ˈspō-zhər \

Kids Definition of exposure

1 : the fact or condition of being subject to some effect or influence exposure to germs exposure to great art

2 : the condition that results from being unprotected especially from severe weather (as extreme cold) The child suffered from exposure.

3 : an act of making something public They were stopped by the exposure of the plot.

4 : the act of letting light strike a photographic film or the time during which light strikes a film

5 : a section of a roll of film for one picture

6 : position with respect to direction The room has a southern exposure.


ex·​po·​sure | \ik-ˈspō-zhər \

Medical Definition of exposure 

1 : the fact or condition of being exposed: as

a : the condition of being unprotected especially from severe weather the hiker died of exposure after becoming lost in the snowstorm

b : the condition of being subject to some detrimental effect or harmful condition repeated exposure to bronchial irritants risk exposure to the flu benign skin discolorations caused by sun exposure— Katie Tyndall

2 : the act or an instance of exposing — see indecent exposure

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Legal Definition of exposure 

1 : the fact or condition of being exposed also : the possibility of loss caused by an outside source used in insurance

2 : the act or an instance of exposing

3a : something that exposes someone or something

b : something (as a condition, situation, or action) that creates a risk of financial loss especially for which one may be insured two forms of insurance are needed to cover the exposure fully— R. I. Mehr also : the extent to which one is at risk

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More from Merriam-Webster on exposure

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with exposure

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for exposure

Spanish Central: Translation of exposure

Nglish: Translation of exposure for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of exposure for Arabic Speakers

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