Definition of self-medicate in English:



  • 1 Choose and take medicines oneself, rather than by prescription or on expert advice.

    • ‘Instead, we often seek pick-me-up foods or beverages to self-medicate.’
    • ‘Injured dancers who self-medicate on a regular basis with aspirin or Advil can develop problems such as ulcers or kidney damage.’
    • ‘Americans spend an estimated $4 billion a year to self-medicate with herbal supplements, which are not regulated by the FDA.’
    • ‘At first he thought he was suffering from arthritis and had been self-medicating.’
    • ‘These studies are important because patients who self-medicate with herbs need to be sure that they are getting what advertisers claim on the label.’
    • ‘His condition remains stable and his symptoms are well controlled by anti-psychotic medication with which he self-medicates as prescribed.’
    • ‘Physicians should remain alert to signs of secondary headache in patients who are self-medicating frequently.’
    • ‘We may think that we are self-medicating, but we are merely self-indulging.’
    • ‘Older and responsible students should be allowed to self-medicate at school with OTC products and certain prescription medications.’
    • ‘If we're self-medicating, who decided to medicalise these emotions in the first place?’
    • ‘Many of the poor either self-medicate or get whatever remedies they can from local pharmacists who are the only health care providers in some rural areas.’
    • ‘I hate doctors, so I self-medicated, went back to work the next day, and limped around for the next 6 weeks or so while my foot slowly changed colour.’
    • ‘Ninety percent of the subjects self-medicated, usually for pain or colds.’
    • ‘Whilst it is great that you can just wander into a pharmacy and buy all the cheap drugs you want and self-medicate with whatever you think you need, there can be a downside to all this.’
    • ‘Only 6 subjects sought professional help for their perceived sleep disorder and only 4 subjects elected to self-medicate.’
    1. 1.1Take addictive or habituating drugs to relieve stress or other conditions.
      ‘whenever he hits a period of depression, he has a tendency to self-medicate with any pill or liquid that's in the house’
      • ‘If smokers are self-medicating with nicotine, what does this tell us about the brain?’
      • ‘The panel also expressed concern that many insomnia sufferers self-medicate with alcohol, despite the numerous risks involved and the clear evidence that alcohol actually has a negative overall effect on the quality of sleep.’
      • ‘He went through severe bouts of depression, for which he attempted to self-medicate with alcohol and numerous illicit substances when he was on the street.’
      • ‘When people are under pressure they are taught by the army to self-medicate, and that used to come in the form of alcohol.’
      • ‘However, it is also possible that these persons are feeling sad or angry and are getting ready to use drugs to self-medicate.’
      • ‘They may be self-medicating and abusing substances.’
      • ‘Underlying depression and anxiety have also been linked to addictions, as people try to self-medicate to feel better.’
      • ‘As a result, adolescence has became a painful experience and teenagers are self-medicating with drugs and drink to cope with the stress.’
      • ‘When experiencing these symptoms, the individual may choose to wait for the symptoms to pass or to self-medicate through the use of illicit substances.’
      • ‘A popular explanation for these findings is that adolescents who are depressed begin consuming alcohol as a way to self-medicate.’
      • ‘This feature alone will be helpful to the many individuals with social phobia who use alcohol or drugs to self-medicate or who experience the paralysis of depression.’
      • ‘Some patients with panic disorder, particularly men, tend to self-medicate with alcohol, which interferes with therapy.’
      • ‘That raises the possibility that substance use is an attempt to self-medicate.’
      • ‘You can't be smoking, drinking, and self-medicating every day!’
      • ‘The findings suggest that when people with schizophrenia smoke, they may in part be self-medicating with nicotine to remedy cognitive deficits.’
      • ‘How many of them self-medicate with alcohol or drugs?’
      • ‘Other studies have shown that abused women self-medicate with alcohol, illicit drugs, and prescription medication to alleviate the pain and anxiety of living under the constant threat of violence.’
      • ‘Although patients with panic disorder may self-medicate with alcohol, the lifetime prevalence of alcohol and substance abuse is not significantly different in this group than in the general population.’
      • ‘I had just lost my brother and dealt with it the only way I knew how, by self-medicating.’
      • ‘On the flip side, many people self-medicate to try to ease the pain in their lives.’