self-ad·​min·​is·​ter ˌself-əd-ˈmi-nə-stər How to pronounce self-administer (audio)
self-administered; self-administering; self-administers

transitive + intransitive

: to administer (something, such as a drug) to oneself
can self-administer the drug with an inhaler
allowed to self-administer the test
Those regulations … also state that only a school nurse can apply medications, but exemptions exist that allow students in some cases to self-administer according to district guidelines.Jennifer Bogdan

Examples of self-administer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Another recent study found that self-administering psychedelics helped people treat obsessive-compulsive disorder symptoms, even without facilitated therapy. Celia Ford, WIRED, 9 Oct. 2023 By self-administering intramuscular injections, bodybuilders can conveniently incorporate this therapy into their routine and experience a range of benefits. Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 30 June 2023 An assisted suicide—in which a doctor prescribes a lethal cocktail that the patient self-administers under circumstances of his own choosing—is still a suicide. Michel Houellebecq, Harper's Magazine, 6 Jan. 2023 In some countries, medical provision of TRT is lacking, causing many people to self-administer the products, which is never recommended. Jon Stojan, USA TODAY, 30 May 2023 Another migrant was already sitting on the tailgate of the truck, self-administering some type of shot to her left arm. Raul Roa, Los Angeles Times, 10 May 2023 But some members of online alternative medicine groups have reported self-administering highly concentrated, veterinary-grade ivermectin to treat illnesses. CBS News, 2 May 2023 Currently, travelers to Hong Kong are required to undergo a rapid antigen test, which can be self-administered within 24 hours of their departure, or undergo a PCR test within 48 hours of their departure, according to the Hong Kong Tourism Board. Alison Fox, Travel + Leisure, 14 Mar. 2023 The facility must also provide at least one of these services: community meals, light housework, meal preparation, transportation, grocery shopping, money management, laundry services or help with self-administering medication. Dallas News, 23 Feb. 2023 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1846, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of self-administer was in 1846

Dictionary Entries Near self-administer

Cite this Entry

“Self-administer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Nov. 2023.

Medical Definition


transitive verb
self-ad·​min·​i·​ster -əd-ˈmi-nə-stər How to pronounce self-administer (audio)
: to administer (as a drug) to oneself
self-administered an analgesic
self-administration noun
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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