Definition of discomfort in US English:

discomfort

noun

  • 1Slight pain.

    ‘the patient complained of discomfort in the left calf’
    • ‘He has also had to endure shooting pains in different parts of his body, abdominal discomfort, nausea and some irregular heartbeats.’
    • ‘However, no patient complained of chest discomfort or anginal pain during acupuncture stimulation.’
    • ‘Massage has only minor adverse effects, including pain and discomfort in some patients.’
    • ‘Most patients also have epigastric discomfort or dull back pain.’
    • ‘Furthermore, the pain and discomfort suffered by patients is significantly reduced, as is the drain on health service resources.’
    • ‘Most patients came to the hospital because of increasing swelling, discomfort, or pain at the injection site but soon became systemically ill.’
    • ‘He was also examined by a police surgeon and his own GP, and said he had suffered pain and discomfort and a slight scratch to his arm.’
    • ‘The objective in wound management is to heal the wound in the shortest time possible, with minimal pain, discomfort, and scarring to the patient.’
    • ‘Unabsorbed fats may also cause excessive intestinal gas, an abnormally swollen belly, and abdominal pain or discomfort.’
    • ‘Pain and discomfort may increase, remain at the same level, or decrease as death approaches.’
    • ‘He also experienced some vague abdominal discomfort and complained about significant weight loss.’
    • ‘And yes, there is likely to be tenderness, discomfort and slight swelling, so use an ice pack and stay off your feet for 48 hours.’
    • ‘See your doctor if you experience blood flecks in your stools, a change in your regular bowel habits, abdominal pain or discomfort lasting two weeks or more, or unexplained weight loss.’
    • ‘And apart from altered bowel movement, IBS sufferers also complain about feeling bloated, abdominal pain and discomfort.’
    • ‘Although varicose veins do not generally threaten your health they can be a massive cosmetic concern, not to mention the common symptoms of discomfort, aching, pain and itching.’
    • ‘It is defined as persistent or recurrent abdominal pain or abdominal discomfort centered in the upper abdomen.’
    • ‘Deep palpation of the right upper abdominal quadrant caused mild discomfort and pain.’
    • ‘Irritable bowel syndrome is characterized by recurrent episodes of abdominal pain and discomfort and disturbed bowel habits.’
    • ‘The procedure takes about 15 minutes and the patient experiences no pain or discomfort and is free to go home immediately after the treatment.’
    • ‘Some complain of a nonspecific dental discomfort or a pain in the sinus or ear region.’
    pain, aches and pains, soreness, tenderness, irritation, stiffness, malaise
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A state of mental unease; worry or embarrassment.
      ‘his remarks caused her discomfort’
      • ‘Connor's disposition had slowly adapted from one of amusement to one of worry and discomfort.’
      • ‘A feeling of discomfort and fear crawled to her heart and mind.’
      • ‘Derek paused a moment and shuffled his feet a moment, giving off the vibe of discomfort and perhaps even embarrassment.’
      • ‘There was no sign of discomfort or worry, but there was also no sign of complete peace or happiness either.’
      • ‘While I have the support of my family, the fact that these charges are outstanding has created embarrassment and discomfort for them in our community and in our family.’
      • ‘It is not unusual for manic patients to run up large debts, or follow a course of action that later causes them intense embarrassment, or discomfort, when they have fully recovered.’
      • ‘Their genuine discomfort, jealousy, desire, annoyance, and camaraderie are the heart of the film.’
      • ‘This may exacerbate feelings of anxiety or discomfort and shy behaviour.’
      • ‘Some students were able to process their feelings of discomfort and apprehension during their presentations.’
      • ‘Not showing any sign of discomfort or worry, I sat down.’
      • ‘Her fear, discomfort and social ineptitude would rage inside of her during class.’
      • ‘We are drawn to his women not by attractive packages but by the humanity of his subjects, by their discomfort or embarrassment, mirth or sadness, the surge of their blood.’
      • ‘He didn't say a word, just hovered somewhere between embarrassment, happiness and discomfort for a while.’
      • ‘Unconscious guilt is experienced as a vague feeling of discomfort, threat, anxiety or danger, reflected in the film's visual style and in its investigative narrative.’
      • ‘Seeing Julia's discomfort and embarrassment, James did what he thought was best at the moment.’
      • ‘Instead, he finds himself helpless in this situation, experiencing a great deal of confusion, sadness, discomfort, and disturbance.’
      • ‘Back in the engineering lab, things had calmed down a bit, but the feeling of discomfort and uneasiness hadn't escaped the atmosphere.’
      • ‘We tend to view the impoverished with fear, discomfort, apathy, annoyance, callousness or resentment.’
      • ‘Dad greets him with a huge, welcoming smile, displaying no discomfort or embarrassment whatsoever.’
      • ‘A lack of close friends and a dearth of broader social contact generally bring the emotional discomfort or distress known as loneliness.’
      embarrassment, discomfiture, unease, uneasiness, abashment, awkwardness, discomposure, confusion, agitation, nervousness, flusteredness, perturbation, distress, anxiety
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    2. 1.2 Lack of physical comfort.
      ‘the discomforts of too much sun in summer’
      • ‘Some of the common discomforts of pregnancy such as nausea, fatigue, and breast tenderness will be most pronounced during these early weeks.’
      • ‘Needless to say we're keeping all these environmental hazards and discomforts in mind and we'll be very, very careful to select our next house accordingly.’
      • ‘Nutritional measures can help manage discomforts.’
      • ‘These emphasise convenience and comfort, allowing car users to seal themselves off from outside discomforts.’
      • ‘But for people who feel marginalized, the opportunity to insert their voice may be worth whatever risks or discomforts.’
      • ‘Minor discomforts start long trains of thought.’
      • ‘The sun was scorching his bare back and his thighs were beginning to ache from the friction of the horse's saddle-free back, but he ignored the discomforts.’
      • ‘The collection explores a wide range of themes, the main ones being leaving and arriving, the discomforts of teenage years, and the beauty and agony of love relationships.’
      • ‘But physical discomforts during the third trimester, such as heartburn, leg cramps, fetal movement, shortness of breath and sinus congestion, can again interfere with sleep.’
      • ‘People in this group tend to be highly culturally aware and sensitive to the discomforts of ‘post-modernists’.’
      • ‘As if by magic all the man's discomforts disappeared in a couple of days: his head was refreshed and his eyes became bright.’
      • ‘My sister spent several months there - and like everyone I've met who's ever been to the place, fell totally in love with it, despite its many ghastly discomforts and problems.’
      • ‘This is the image I fostered on the flight over, trying desperately to take my mind off the discomforts of the long journey.’
      • ‘Yet what small discomforts are those compared to this woman's situation.’
      • ‘Generally, in culture these discomforts, stimulations, are blocked out; they are not speakable, packageable, or they are disruptive.’
      • ‘The status of a happening city comes with its own discomforts.’
      • ‘But he shared his men's perils and discomforts, and he was loved by them in turn.’
      • ‘My interviewer couldn't see past the potential discomforts of walking up and down mountain slopes carrying a heavy pack containing all my camping gear.’
      • ‘Amid the discomforts of his passage the author reflects on or trawls his past, his sorrows and betrayals, his experience as a wartime evacuee.’
      • ‘Their playing is willfully steeped in the discomforts of danger and exploration, and their inventions all the more stunning for their studied adversity.’
      inconvenience, difficulty, bother, nuisance, vexation, drawback, disadvantage, trouble, problem, trial, tribulation
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verb

[with object]
  • 1Make (someone) feel uneasy, anxious, or embarrassed.

    ‘she liked to discomfort my mother by her remarks’
    • ‘The story has a slightly harder tone than the first, but there is nothing on display that will discomfort anyone of any age.’
    • ‘It survived, but was none the less discomforted by it.’
    • ‘With these and other half-truisms did he discomfort the parents.’
    • ‘She was obviously discomforted by the idea of public performance, and yet she was smiling.’
    • ‘If this salvation story is authentic, it must challenge and discomfort us at each new point in history.’
    • ‘Perhaps discomforted by these challenges, contemporary critics disparaged the painting.’
    • ‘The town, and county, already hit by shortage due to World War II, now were further discomforted by dwindling butter stocks.’
    • ‘This claim will discomfort many an actuary or mathematician.’
    • ‘His religious conversion discomforted some of the critics who hailed his early novels.’
    • ‘Although I was trained, I was quite discomforted by the new arrangement.’
    • ‘Remember we grew up together, I know my enemies well enough to know what discomforts them.’
    • ‘The episode would have discomforted anybody, let alone a writer whose public image is integral to his marketing.’
    • ‘She lets go of my arms, discomforted by the comment.’
    • ‘He had behaved impeccably so far, had shown no sign of ill character, so why did his very presence discomfort her?’
    • ‘I found nothing to wound me in that research, nothing that discomforted me.’
    • ‘That's because there's something in the nature of live art that has the potential to discomfort us like no other form can.’
    • ‘I like to see new things, though they often discomfort me.’
    • ‘Normally when he was discomforted he made it known if only to unload some of it onto someone else.’
    • ‘This has been a strike which has discomforted everyone, in addition to the biting cold season being experienced.’
    • ‘But he was discomforted with that saying, and went away mourning, for he had great possessions.’
    discomfit, make uneasy, make uncomfortable, embarrass, abash, disconcert, nonplus, discompose, take aback, unsettle, unnerve, put someone off their stroke, upset, ruffle, fluster, perturb, disturb
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1often as adjective discomforting Cause (someone) slight pain.
      ‘the patient's condition has discomforting symptoms’
      • ‘You would think needles might be discomforting, but these are very thin needles.’
      • ‘It's just before the point when the pain turns from discomforting to agonising that he lets go of my hand.’
      • ‘If you have sensitive teeth, you must be very familiar with the severely discomforting pain that goes with it.’
      • ‘The patient is not discomforted by this and even may not be aware of it.’
      • ‘In patients with significantly discomforting or disabling symptoms that are not controlled with standard measures, specific allergy testing may be warranted.’
      • ‘The standard medical treatment is to spend a day or two in bed and take soluble aspirin to alleviate the minor discomforting symptoms.’
      • ‘You will also be able to manage discomforting pain as labor advances.’
      • ‘I have been experiencing really discomforting pain around my ankle and arch when I stand more then 5 minutes.’
      • ‘There is disclosed a composition and method for reducing or alleviating the discomforting symptoms associate with menstruation, particularly menstrual pain.’
      • ‘The most discomforting abdominal pains are the acute and gripping ones.’

Usage

On the difference between discomfort and discomfit, see discomfit

Origin

Middle English (as a verb in the sense ‘dishearten’): from Old French desconforter (verb), desconfort (noun), from des- (expressing reversal) + conforter ‘to comfort’ (see comfort).

Pronunciation

discomfort

/dɪsˈkəmfərt//disˈkəmfərt/