sen·​si·​ti·​za·​tion ˌsen(t)-sə-tə-ˈzā-shən How to pronounce sensitization (audio)
: the action or process of sensitizing
: the quality or state of being sensitized (as to an antigen)

Examples of sensitization in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This suggests that central sensitization might be behind the pain in some of these people, says study coauthor Nadine Attal, a pain specialist at the Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris. Amber Dance, Discover Magazine, 21 Jan. 2020 Additionally, it has been shown to help you last longer during intimate activities due to its cbd content - cbd has been found to reduce nerve sensitization in the pelvic area making intense sensations more bearable. Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 17 Mar. 2023 These populations already have had sensitization to other toxicants - wildfire smoke is just another variable on top of that. Andrea Thompson, Scientific American, 9 June 2023 Clauw and his Michigan colleagues believe that central sensitization shows up in myriad conditions, from irritable bowel syndrome to chronic pelvic pain to dry eye disease. Amber Dance, Discover Magazine, 21 Jan. 2020 States and local governments have significantly greater roles to play in zoning restriction, inspection requirements, community sensitization guidance, safety protections, and equity protection on the ground – right where these new installations will be required. Harrison Wolf, Forbes, 5 May 2023 Rabbit constitutes a reliable risk factor for allergic sensitization in individuals working as professional / part-time magicians or as animators in some recreational settings (resorts, parties, charity shows, etc). Seriously Science, Discover Magazine, 25 Sep. 2014 Later work described the phenomenon of central sensitization: Long after an injury has healed, the central nervous system remains persistently overreactive to stimuli — like Moseley experiencing agonizing pain at the same site months after his snakebite. Cathryn Jakobson Ramin, Discover Magazine, 11 Feb. 2019 The clear, colorless liquid can cause irritation to the eyes, skin and upper respiratory system, along with sensitization dermatitis and difficulty breathing. Quinlan Bentley, The Enquirer, 17 Feb. 2023 See More

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

1857, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of sensitization was in 1857

Dictionary Entries Near sensitization

Cite this Entry

“Sensitization.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Feb. 2024.

Medical Definition


variants also British sensitisation
: the action or process of making sensitive or hypersensitive
allergic sensitization of the skin
: the process of becoming sensitive or hypersensitive (as to an antigen)
also : the resulting state
: a form of nonassociative learning characterized by an increase in responsiveness upon repeated exposure to a stimulus compare habituation sense 3
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