formaldehyde

noun

form·​al·​de·​hyde fȯr-ˈmal-də-ˌhīd How to pronounce formaldehyde (audio)
fər-
: a colorless pungent irritating gas CH2O used chiefly in aqueous solution as a disinfectant and preservative and in chemical synthesis

Examples of formaldehyde in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The Food and Drug Administration is looking to ban chemical hair smoothing and straightening products that contain formaldehyde due to potential health impacts. Sara Moniuszko, CBS News, 18 Oct. 2023 The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) just proposed a ban on hair-straightening products containing formaldehyde after years of discussion about the safety of the chemical. Kara Nesvig, Allure, 18 Oct. 2023 Scientists have long identified formaldehyde as a potentially hazardous chemical to humans, with a study emerging in 2019 that it is linked to breast cancer, per the International Journal of Cancer. Chris Barilla, Peoplemag, 16 Oct. 2023 On a recent visit, a technician unscrews one of the jars, empties the formaldehyde and rinses the krill under running water, a dozen fitting in the palm of his hand. Joshua Goodman, Fortune, 13 Oct. 2023 However, the process developed by Wang and his colleagues to make their sponge uses formaldehyde, a highly toxic compound, and there were traces of this in the sponges themselves. Chris Baraniuk, Smithsonian Magazine, 5 Oct. 2023 This model will identify PM2.5, PM10, and a range of VOCs, in addition to detecting formaldehyde and carbon dioxide. Lorraine Wilde, Treehugger, 7 June 2023 But Black hair stylists say such products — specifically the ones being looked at by the FDA, which contain formaldehyde and formaldehyde-releasing chemicals — have fallen out of favor, especially among younger generations. Kenya Hunter, Fortune Well, 20 Oct. 2023 The Food and Drug Administration is proposing a rule that formaldehyde would no longer be used as an ingredient in hair relaxers because of the health risks posed for Black women. Elizabeth Ayoola, Essence, 20 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'formaldehyde.' 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

International Scientific Vocabulary form- + aldehyde

First Known Use

1872, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of formaldehyde was in 1872

Dictionary Entries Near formaldehyde

Cite this Entry

“Formaldehyde.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/formaldehyde. Accessed 1 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

formaldehyde

noun
form·​al·​de·​hyde fȯr-ˈmal-də-ˌhīd How to pronounce formaldehyde (audio)
fər-
: a colorless gas that consists of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen, has a sharp irritating odor, and when dissolved in water is used to disinfect or to prevent decay

Medical Definition

formaldehyde

noun
form·​al·​de·​hyde fȯr-ˈmal-də-ˌhīd, fər- How to pronounce formaldehyde (audio)
: a colorless pungent irritating gas CH2O used chiefly as a disinfectant and preservative and in chemical synthesis

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