[ dee-tok-suh-fahy ]
/ diˈtɒk sə faɪ /

verb (used with object), de·tox·i·fied, de·tox·i·fy·ing.

to rid of poison or the effect of poison.
to treat (a person addicted to alcohol or drugs) under a program of detoxification.

verb (used without object), de·tox·i·fied, de·tox·i·fy·ing.

to undergo detoxification.

Nearby words

  1. detox,
  2. detoxicant,
  3. detoxicate,
  4. detoxification,
  5. detoxification centre,
  6. detr,
  7. detract,
  8. detraction,
  9. detractive,
  10. detractively

Origin of detoxify

First recorded in 1900–05; detoxi(cate) + -fy Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for detoxify

  • Even now, despite David Cameron's efforts to “detoxify” the Tory brand, the party only holds one Scottish seat.

    A Stand-Alone Scotland|Alex Massie|January 11, 2012|DAILY BEAST

British Dictionary definitions for detoxify


/ (diːˈtɒksɪˌfaɪ) /

verb -fies, -fying or -fied (tr)

to remove poison from; detoxicate
to treat (a person) for alcoholism or drug addiction
Derived Formsdetoxification, 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

Word Origin and History for detoxify



1905; see de- + toxic + -fy. Earlier in the same sense was detoxicate (1867).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for detoxify


[ dē-tŏksə-fī′ ]


To counteract or destroy the toxic properties of a substance.
To remove the effects of poison from something, such as the blood.
To treat a person for alcohol or drug dependence, usually under a medically supervised program designed to rid the body of intoxicating or addictive substances.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.