desensitize

[ dee-sen-si-tahyz ]
/ diˈsɛn sɪˌtaɪz /

verb (used with object), de·sen·si·tized, de·sen·si·tiz·ing.

to lessen the sensitiveness of.
to make indifferent, unaware, or the like, in feeling.
Photography. to make less sensitive or wholly insensitive to light, as the emulsion on a film.
Printing. to treat (the design on a lithographic plate) with an etch in order to increase the capacity to retain moisture, and to remove traces of grease.
Chemistry. to reduce the sensitivity of (an explosive) to those stimuli capable of detonating it.
Also especially British, de·sen·si·tise.

Origin of desensitize

First recorded in 1900–05; de- + sensitize

Related forms

de·sen·si·tiz·er, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for desensitise

desensitize

desensitise

/ (diːˈsɛnsɪˌtaɪz) /

verb (tr)

to render insensitive or less sensitivethe patient was desensitized to the allergen; to desensitize photographic film
psychol to decrease the abnormal fear in (a person) of a situation or object, by exposing him to it either in reality or in his imagination

Derived Forms

desensitization or desensitisation, noundesensitizer or desensitiser, noun
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

Medicine definitions for desensitise

desensitize

[ dē-sĕnsĭ-tīz′ ]

v.

To render insensitive or less sensitive, as a nerve or tooth.
To make an individual nonreactive or insensitive to an antigen.
To make a person emotionally insensitive or unresponsive, as by long exposure or repeated shocks.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.