ther·​a·​pist | \ ˈther-ə-pist \

Definition of therapist 

1 : an individual specializing in the therapeutic medical treatment of impairment, injury, disease, or disorder especially : a health-care professional trained in methods of treatment and rehabilitation other than the use of drugs or surgery These simple range-of-motion exercises are often prescribed by physical, occupational, or hand therapists for people with hand OA [=osteoarthritis]. Food {amp} Fitness Advisor To help the baby interact with his family, a speech therapist taught everyone—including Justin's twin brother, Jeffery—hand signals and games. — Michele Blecher
2 : a practitioner of psychotherapy : a psychotherapist Again, it is important for the therapist to recognize that regression is normative due to the extreme stress of separation and divorce.— Nathan W. Turner

Examples of therapist in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Sherry Amatenstein, a licensed clinical social worker and therapist, tells SELF. Meredith Clark, SELF, "Why Some Couples Can Recover After Cheating and Others Can't," 27 Dec. 2018 Jen and Sarah dropped their foster daughter at a therapist's office and never returned. Glamour, "Broken Harts, Episode 2: 'If Not Us, Who?'," 11 Dec. 2018 Here’s where Matt Traube, a licensed clinical therapist who specializes in psychodermatology — one of few across the country — comes in. Katie Heaney, The Cut, "Could Improving Your Mental Health Improve Your Skin?," 9 July 2018 Flynn's never-quit attitude inspired Colleen to become an occupational therapist. Jason Williams,, "PX column: As always, Kevin Flynn keeps his word, rises out of wheelchair at daughter's wedding," 9 July 2018 During his six weeks there, Pohl took intensive classes with about 10 other boys and talked to his therapist frequently. Christine Vestal, Washington Post, "Marijuana addiction is real but many users don’t realize that," 24 June 2018 In a therapist's office, spouses can learn conflict-management skills (like the Gottman-Rapoport intervention, based on a method used to increase understanding between nations during the Cold War) and ways to connect and understand each other. John Gottman And Christopher Dollard,, "Five myths about marriage," 14 June 2018 Not only is Josh alone and troubled, now his only living relative and protector and his therapist, sworn to do no harm, are knocking boots in a highly unethical manner. Michael Heaton,, "'Aardvark' is a strange beast of a movie (review)," 13 Apr. 2018 After long struggle and many setbacks, my therapist slowly got me to put aside my mask. Keith Gessen, The New Yorker, "The Silence: The Legacy of Childhood Trauma," 10 Apr. 2018

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

1880, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for therapist

Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for therapist

The first known use of therapist was in 1880

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English Language Learners Definition of therapist

: a person trained in methods of treating illnesses especially without the use of drugs or surgery

: a person who helps people deal with mental or emotional problems by talking about those problems : a person trained in psychotherapy


ther·​a·​pist | \ ˈther-ə-pəst \

Kids Definition of therapist

: a person specializing in treating disorders or injuries of the body or mind especially in ways that do not involve drugs and surgery a speech therapist


ther·​a·​pist | \ ˈther-ə-pəst \

Medical Definition of therapist 

: a person specializing in therapy especially : one trained in methods of treatment and rehabilitation other than the use of drugs or surgery

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More from Merriam-Webster on therapist

Spanish Central: Translation of therapist

Nglish: Translation of therapist for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of therapist for Arabic Speakers

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