OTHER WORDS FROM decompressde·com·pres·sive, adjective
Words nearby decompress
MORE ABOUT DECOMPRESS
What does decompress mean?
Decompress means to release or reduce pressure.
This literal meaning of decompress can be used in several contexts. Divers who’ve spent time in deep water decompress by coming up slowly. Divers and other underwater workers sometimes decompress by using a decompression chamber. The goal of these processes is to return the body to normal atmospheric pressure in order to avoid decompression sickness.
In a medical context, to decompress is to release pressure in the body, such as from inside the skull through surgery.
Decompress can also be used in a figurative way meaning to relax or unwind. This sense of the word likens stress to pressure within the body that needs to be released. A close synonym is destress. An even more informal way of saying this is blow off steam.
In all senses of the word, the process of decompressing is called decompression.
Example: Yoga really helps me to decompress after a stressful day at work.
Where does decompress come from?
The first records of decompress come from the early 1900s. Its root word, the verb compress, means “to press together.” The prefix de- means “removal” or “reversal.” So, to decompress is to remove pressure.
For divers, decompressing can be the difference between life and death. The figurative sense of decompressing might not be quite as critical, but it’s still important. This kind of decompression can be done after any type of stressful situation, but it’s most often applied to what people do to switch off work mode. Sometimes, a day at work is like a day spent in deep water, with more and more pressure (stress) building up as the day goes on. Even after you finally resurface, you might still feel that pressure unless you find a way to release it. Different people decompress in different ways. For some people, their commute home is like a decompression chamber, where they can decompress by listening to music or a podcast. Others might decompress by exercising, meditating, reading, watching TV, playing video games, getting a massage, or spending time with friends. The best way to decompress is the way that works.
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How is decompress used in real life?
Since most people don’t literally work underwater, decompress is most commonly used in a figurative way in the context of stress relief.
Fisherman pulled up a diver for being in his fishing spot w/o giving her time to decompress, faces battery charges: http://t.co/0jUw0lH3
— Outside Magazine (@outsidemagazine) July 3, 2012
I've had enough of today. Time to read and decompress….💚
— Aιɱҽҽ Kαɾყɳ (@Nautigirl4life) April 16, 2020
Sorry I disappeared to do art and decompress. I’m feeling a bit better. 💖
— Evit-SANNN-EEeehhhh 🤷♂️ (@Evit_cani) April 17, 2020
Try using decompress!
Is decompress used correctly in the following sentence?
Some people decompress by being active, and others decompress by doing as little as possible.
How to use decompress in a sentence
Burns says that “leg stiffness” is a measure of how a runner compresses and decompresses while on the ground.Eliud Kipchoge Is the GOAT. What Makes Him So Good?|syadron|August 21, 2021|Outside Online
So if you’re looking for a solid middle-of-the-road set of ’buds that’s ready whether you plan to push hard or decompress, these Skullcandy earbuds may be the perfect fit.Skullcandy Indy ANC earbuds review: A lot of features for little money|Tony Ware|August 18, 2021|Popular-Science
Their bite-sized portions allow them to decompress and internalize what they’ve seen, rather than pushing ever ahead into the unknown.
That’s not good for anyone’s mental health so we instituted this policy to really reinforce that we want people to decompress and take that time off.Some agencies are giving summer Fridays a second look so employees can ‘enjoy their life again’|Kristina Monllos|May 14, 2021|Digiday
Plus, it’s a great screen-free activity to decompress from too many hours online.37 Gifts to Buy This Mother's Day for Every Type of Mom in Your Life|Melissa Locker|May 3, 2021|Time
Everyone was dazed by their look at death, but relieved by the opportunity to decompress.
He was talking about places that give a neighborhood its stability and coherence, where we can see familiar faces and decompress.
He cited the waste of oxygen which resulted by having to decompress Bandit every time someone left or entered the ship.First on the Moon|Jeff Sutton