\ ˈhēl How to pronounce heal (audio) \
healed; healing; heals

Definition of heal

transitive verb

1a : to make free from injury or disease : to make sound or whole heal a wound
b : to make well again : to restore to health heal the sick
2a : to cause (an undesirable condition) to be overcome : mend the troubles … had not been forgotten, but they had been healed— William Power
b : to patch up or correct (a breach or division) heal a breach between friends
3 : to restore to original purity or integrity healed of sin

intransitive verb

: to become free from injury or disease : to return to a sound state The cut has already healed.

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Examples of heal in a Sentence

You've got to give the injury time to heal. After the divorce, he needed some time to heal. The ointment will help heal the wound.
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Recent Examples on the Web Years ago, when her husband first got sick, Edith was looking for ways to heal him beyond science. Olivia Truffaut-wong, refinery29.com, "R29 Recaps: Every Episode From The Irregulars Season 1," 30 Mar. 2021 The country’s trauma, and Francis’ efforts to heal it, were on full display in Mosul, Iraq’s third-largest city. New York Times, "Amid the Rubble of Mosul, Francis Offers a Salve for Iraq’s Wounds," 7 Mar. 2021 After taking a decade to heal both physically and mentally, Sadler released a string of albums, toured across the U.S. and released a book about his experiences. Chris Eggertsen, Billboard, "The Deals: Avex Invests in 'Virtual Artist' Label Spirit Bomb, Quality Control Strikes Gaming Partnership," 4 Mar. 2021 The body has an incredible, inherent ability to heal itself and to regain its function. Mike Freeman, San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego’s SpineZone pulls in $12 million in venture funding," 25 Feb. 2021 Our lungs are both protection and portal, the nexus of our relationship with an environment that can heal us as well as harm us. Brooke Jarvis, The New Yorker, "What Happens When You Breathe," 18 Jan. 2021 The only time hair is actually able to heal itself is when it’s in liquid form under the scalp. Amber Rambharose, Allure, "The Science of Beauty: How to Take Care of Curly Hair," 10 Dec. 2020 Put the country’s need to heal itself ahead of your needs. Star Tribune, "Readers Write: Toplessness in Minneapolis parks, police reform, COVID and the holidays," 24 Nov. 2020 After taking some time to heal and grieve, the 34-year-old has been slowly making her return to social media. Natasha Reda, Glamour, "Chrissy Teigen Unveiled a Tattoo In Honor of Her Son, Jack, Following Pregnancy Loss," 1 Nov. 2020

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for heal

Middle English helen, from Old English hǣlan; akin to Old High German heilen to heal, Old English hāl whole — more at whole

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Time Traveler for heal

Time Traveler

The first known use of heal was before the 12th century

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Statistics for heal

Last Updated

7 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Heal.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/heal. Accessed 10 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for heal



English Language Learners Definition of heal

: to become healthy or well again
: to make (someone or something) healthy or well again


\ ˈhēl How to pronounce heal (audio) \
healed; healing

Kids Definition of heal

: to make or become healthy or well again The cut healed slowly.

Other Words from heal

healer noun
\ ˈhē(ə)l How to pronounce heal (audio) \

Medical Definition of heal

1 : to make sound or whole especially in bodily condition
2 : to cure of disease or disorder heal injured tissues

intransitive verb

1 : to return to a sound state the wound heals
2 : to effect a cure

Other Words from heal

healer \ ˈhē-​lər How to pronounce heal (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on heal

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for heal

Nglish: Translation of heal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of heal for Arabic Speakers

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