Definition of inhibit in English:

inhibit

verb

  • 1with object Hinder, restrain, or prevent (an action or process)

    ‘cold inhibits plant growth’
    • ‘Unfortunately, this process is often inhibited by the idea that somehow we are not supposed to make mistakes, that mistakes are bad.’
    • ‘Many developing nations, on the other, argue that intellectual property rights inhibit economic development by restricting use of existing knowledge.’
    • ‘Tight ‘influx’ controls were designed to check urban growth and inhibit the development of a black urban working class.’
    • ‘Secondly, it inhibits processes of local technological learning essential for development.’
    • ‘But this failure to take responsibility inhibits the learning process.’
    • ‘The failures are used as a key to understanding the underlying mental processes that inhibit development.’
    • ‘Public provision of social security assistance could become less important if governments remove policies inhibiting innovation or restraining growth.’
    • ‘The federal government stepped in with safety requirements that essentially eliminated the daredevil antics, but didn't inhibit the growth of passenger airlines.’
    • ‘This chemical is a growth regulator that inhibits the molting process in grasshoppers.’
    • ‘This is especially true of environmental issues, whose regulation may require modification of economic policies and be perceived as inhibiting development and growth.’
    • ‘It also inhibits the thickening of grass, which usually happens in September and October.’
    • ‘It does inhibit the rusting process, at least for six months or so.’
    • ‘‘In big companies, there can be a lot of layers that inhibit the creative process,’ she says, explaining her decision to strike out on her own.’
    • ‘But while businesses in other areas highlight finance and skills shortages as factors inhibiting growth, nearly one-third of firms in York and North Yorkshire said inadequate transport infrastructure was a major stumbling block.’
    • ‘None of these problems is critical, but they all act to inhibit the process of renewing Australia's economic infrastructure.’
    • ‘It is inhibiting institutional growth and diversification.’
    • ‘It also can induce an early turn of the hand at the release point, and hinder and inhibit a clean, smooth follow-through.’
    • ‘For example, beet and rape support more biodiversity than maize (which is much taller, inhibiting the growth of weeds beneath).’
    • ‘My concern remains that an authority like the Restatement inhibits this evolutionary process - though I could be wrong about this.’
    • ‘The size and weight of early equipment, as well as technical difficulties and financial restraints, inhibited the development of radio communications between the wars.’
    impede, hinder, hamper, hold back, discourage, interfere with, obstruct, put a brake on, slow, slow down, retard
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Prevent or prohibit (someone) from doing something.
      ‘the earnings rule inhibited some retired people from working’
      • ‘Break it up, and let us staff it with people who care about what they do, and do not have to bow and scrape to a Government bureaucracy that inhibits them from being as constructive as they possibly can be.’
      • ‘This reason is cited by 15 percent of respondents as a factor which either has or will inhibit them from seeing a psychotherapist.’
      • ‘Such a situation inhibits us from engaging the prayer book for what it is as a treasury of public prayer which we should be able to use intelligently and not merely by rote.’
      • ‘We need to escape from our food culture, which inhibits us from creating and reaching out to a better future.’
      • ‘Later they said that the presence of the live TV cameras inhibited them from taking aggressive measures to end the ordeal.’
    2. 1.2Physiology Biochemistry (of a substance) slow down or prevent (a process, reaction, or function) or reduce the activity of (an enzyme or other agent).
      • ‘Drugs inhibiting the enzyme would prevent cell death, the goal in treating stroke and neurodegenerative diseases.’
      • ‘Finally inclusion of EDTA in the reaction mixture inhibited the binding reaction suggesting that the divalent cations are essential for this binding activity.’
      • ‘All nerve agents act by inhibiting the enzyme acetylcholinesterase, which breaks down the neurotransmitter acetylcholine.’
      • ‘If the restriction enzyme activities were inhibited, the DNA fragment would not be cleaved and should be seen in its original size on the gel.’
      • ‘Unlike liquid extracted from other varieties of citrus, grapefruit juice can inhibit enzyme reactions in the gut.’
  • 2Make (someone) self-conscious and unable to act in a relaxed and natural way.

    ‘they felt inhibited by the presence of healthcare professionals’
    • ‘But if that apprehension is so severe it inhibits you, forget about it.’
    • ‘Nor can you allow his prior experience to inhibit you, since it does not put you at a disadvantage in any way that really matters.’
    • ‘You could dress it in superhero costumes, fantasize scenarios in which it pulls off epic feats, and use it to help you escape the imaginary constraints that have been inhibiting you lately.’
    • ‘Seles still won, but the publicity inhibited her.’
    • ‘That is totally unnecessary and may inhibit you.’
    • ‘Moreover, rather than inhibiting her, marriage permits her to yield to passion.’
    • ‘I can't ice skate on my own, if someone else holds on to me with their little finger I'm fine, I'm definitely inhibited by too much thought.’
    • ‘You are easily inhibited by setbacks, and you seek projects that don't require minute accountability.’
    • ‘Methinks that my fear of not being able to get out again once I did go through inhibited me.’
    • ‘That one looked like he would like very much to be drunk, but obviously he was inhibited by the presence of his superior officer.’
    • ‘Her stammer inhibited her but she had one ace up her sleeve.’
    • ‘Grim-faced, head bowed and muttering to himself, Owen walked straight on, allowing the warm Madrid night to swallow him up along with whatever dark thoughts inhibited him.’
    • ‘Bluffly outgoing, infallibly at ease in large groups, he seemed inhibited by screen intimacy.’
    • ‘It merely inhibits him and irritates his dangerous psychological condition.’
    • ‘You hope that if he was inhibited at all by Barry's presence then he will feel more free in himself and in his playing.’
  • 3(in ecclesiastical law) forbid (a member of the clergy) to exercise clerical functions.

Origin

Late Middle English (in the sense ‘forbid (a person) to do something’): from Latin inhibere ‘hinder’, from in- ‘in’ + habere ‘hold’.

Pronunciation

inhibit

/ɪnˈhɪbɪt/