irritant

[ ir-i-tnt ]
/ ˈɪr ɪ tnt /

adjective

tending to cause irritation; irritating.

noun

anything that irritates.
Physiology, Pathology. a biological, chemical, or physical agent that stimulates a characteristic function or elicits a response, especially an inflammatory response.

Nearby words

  1. irriguous,
  2. irritability,
  3. irritable,
  4. irritable bowel syndrome,
  5. irritable heart,
  6. irritate,
  7. irritated,
  8. irritatedly,
  9. irritating,
  10. irritation

Origin of irritant

1630–40; < Latin irrītant- (stem of irrītāns), present participle of irrītāre to irritate; see -ant

Related formsir·ri·tan·cy, nounnon·ir·ri·tan·cy, nounnon·ir·ri·tant, adjectiveun·ir·ri·tant, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


British Dictionary definitions for irritancy

irritant

/ (ˈɪrɪtənt) /

adjective

causing irritation; irritating

noun

something irritant
Derived Formsirritancy, 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 irritancy

irritant

adj.

1630s, from Latin irritantem (nominative irritans), present participle of irritare (see irritate). As a noun, from 1802.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for irritancy

irritant

[ ĭrĭ-tənt ]

adj.

Causing irritation, especially physical irritation.

n.

A source of irritation.

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