• synonyms


[ree-huh-bil-i-teyt, ree-uh-]
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verb (used with object), re·ha·bil·i·tat·ed, re·ha·bil·i·tat·ing.
  1. to restore to a condition of good health, ability to work, or the like.
  2. to restore to good condition, operation, or management, as a bankrupt business.
  3. to reestablish the good reputation of (a person, one's character or name, etc.).
  4. to restore formally to former capacity, standing, rank, rights, or privileges.
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verb (used without object), re·ha·bil·i·tat·ed, re·ha·bil·i·tat·ing.
  1. to undergo rehabilitation.
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Origin of rehabilitate

1570–80; < Medieval Latin rehabilitātus, past participle of rehabilitāre to restore. See re-, habilitate
Related formsre·ha·bil·i·ta·tion, nounre·ha·bil·i·ta·tive, adjectivere·ha·bil·i·ta·tor, nounnon·re·ha·bil·i·ta·tion, nounnon·re·ha·bil·i·ta·tive, adjectiveun·re·ha·bil·i·tat·ed, adjective

Synonyms for rehabilitate

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for rehabilitative

curative, remedial, punitive, disciplinary, therapeutic, reformatory, restorative, palliative, amendatory, penal, antidotal, rehabilitative

Examples from the Web for rehabilitative

Contemporary Examples of rehabilitative

British Dictionary definitions for rehabilitative


verb (tr)
  1. to help (a person who has acquired a disability or addiction or who has just been released from prison) to readapt to society or a new job, as by vocational guidance, retraining, or therapy
  2. to restore to a former position or rank
  3. to restore the good reputation of
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Derived Formsrehabilitative, adjective

Word Origin for rehabilitate

C16: from Medieval Latin rehabilitāre to restore, from re- + Latin habilitās skill, ability
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 rehabilitative



1570s, "to bring back to a former condition after decay or damage," back-formation from rehabilitation and in part from Medieval Latin rehabilitatus, past participle of rehabilitare. Meaning "to restore one's reputation or character in the eyes of others" is from 1847. Related: Rehabilitated; rehabilitating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

rehabilitative in Medicine


  1. To restore to good health or useful life, as through therapy and education.
  2. To restore to good condition, operation, or capacity.
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Related formsre′ha•bil′i•tation n.re′ha•bili•ta′tive adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.