[stim-yuh-luh nt]
  1. Physiology, Medicine/Medical. something that temporarily quickens some vital process or the functional activity of some organ or part: Adrenalin is a stimulant for the heart.Compare depressant(def 4).
  2. any food or beverage that stimulates, especially coffee, tea, or, in its initial effect, alcoholic liquor.
  3. a stimulus or incentive.
  1. Physiology, Medicine/Medical. temporarily quickening some vital process or functional activity.
  2. stimulating.

Origin of stimulant

First recorded in 1720–30, stimulant is from the Latin word stimulant- (stem of stimulāns, present participle of stimulāre to goad). See stimulus, -ant
Related formsan·ti·stim·u·lant, adjective, nounnon·stim·u·lant, noun, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for anti-stimulant


  1. a drug or similar substance that increases physiological activity, esp of a particular organ
  2. any stimulating agent or thing
  1. increasing physiological activity; stimulating

Word Origin for stimulant

C18: from Latin stimulāns goading, from stimulāre to urge on; see stimulus
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for anti-stimulant


1772 (adj.); 1794 (n.), from Latin stimulantem (nominative stimulans), present participle of stimulare (see stimulation).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

anti-stimulant in Medicine


  1. An agent that arouses organic activity, strengthens the action of the heart, increases vitality, and promotes a sense of well-being.
  1. Serving as or being a stimulant.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

anti-stimulant in Science


  1. An agent, especially a drug, that causes increased activity, especially of the nervous or cardiovascular systems. Caffeine is a commonly used stimulant.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.