noun, often attributive
re·​hab | \ ˈrē-ˌhab How to pronounce rehab (audio) \

Definition of rehab

1 : the action or process of rehabilitating : rehabilitation especially : a program for rehabilitating especially drug or alcohol abusers
2 : a rehabilitated building or dwelling

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Other Words from rehab

rehab verb
rehabber \ ˈrē-​ˌha-​bər How to pronounce rehabber (audio) \ noun

Examples of rehab in a Sentence

The rehab for his leg injury is going well. the accident victim had to undergo months of rehab before she could walk again

Recent Examples on the Web

Alaskan Bush People's Matt Brown officially completed rehab for the second time earlier this year. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "'Alaskan Bush People' Star Matt Brown Says Life 'Keeps Getting Better' After Rehab," 14 Apr. 2019 But that report illustrates an important caution about safety: One fractured a hip during a rehab treadmill exercise even while carefully supported and upright. Fox News, "Paralyzed patients take first steps after implant, intense rehab," 25 Sep. 2018 In the season’s last section, BoJack checks into rehab to work to contain his latest addiction (to painkillers). Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "BoJack Horseman season 5 is a bold, bracing look at a culture that shirks responsibility," 15 Sep. 2018 Alaskan Bush People's Matt Brown has officially completed rehab for the second time. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "'Alaskan Bush People' Star Billy Brown Speaks Out About Son Matt’s Second Stint in Rehab," 17 Mar. 2019 Selena recently broke her social media silence after leaving rehab for an emotional breakdown. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "Are Selena Gomez and Zac Efron Really Dating?," 14 Feb. 2019 Insider pressure for a progressive rehab of capitalism can do more long-term economic damage than outside political pressure for long-termism that ebbs and flows with two-year election cycles. WSJ, "Schumer, Sanders, Socialism and Buybacks," 12 Feb. 2019 Ellen DeGeneres has a massive platform and has apparently decided to use it to rehab Kevin Hart’s reputation after the actor stepped down from his 2019 Oscars hosting gig in December. Bridget Read, Vogue, "Why Is Ellen DeGeneres Trying to Rehab Kevin Hart as Oscars Host?," 4 Jan. 2019 At a high-profile award ceremony, Jack inadvertently embarrasses Ally, and goes to rehab as a result. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "A Star Is Born Isn't Based on a True Story, But Real-Life People Definitely Inspired It," 22 Feb. 2019

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

1941, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for rehab

short for rehabilitation or rehabilitate

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Statistics for rehab

Last Updated

21 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for rehab

The first known use of rehab was in 1941

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More Definitions for rehab



English Language Learners Definition of rehab

: a program for helping people who have problems with drugs, alcohol, etc.
: the process of helping someone (such as an injured patient or a drug user) to become healthy again : the process of rehabilitating someone


noun, often attributive
re·​hab | \ ˈrē-ˌhab How to pronounce rehab (audio) \

Medical Definition of rehab

: rehabilitation especially : a program for rehabilitating especially drug or alcohol abusers

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More from Merriam-Webster on rehab

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with rehab

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for rehab

Spanish Central: Translation of rehab

Britannica English: Translation of rehab for Arabic Speakers

Comments on rehab

What made you want to look up rehab? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to speak slightingly about or to degrade

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