Definition of sickness noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈsɪknəs//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈsɪknəs//
    Disgust, Being ill
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  1. 1[uncountable] illness; bad health She's been off work because of sickness. insurance against sickness and unemployment Synonymsillnesssickness ill health troubleThese are all words for the state of being physically or mentally ill.illness the state of being physically or mentally ill.sickness illness; bad health:I recommend you get insurance against sickness and unemployment.illness or sickness?Sickness is used especially in contexts concerning work and insurance. It is commonly found with words such as pay, leave, absence and insurance. Illness has a wider range of uses and is found in more general contexts.ill health (rather formal) the state of being physically ill or having lots of health problems:She resigned because of ill health. Ill health often lasts a long period of time.trouble illness or pain:heart trouble. When trouble is used with this meaning, it is necessary to say which part of the body is affected.Patterns chronic illness/​sickness/​ill health to suffer from illness/​sickness/​ill health/​heart, etc. trouble See related entries: Being ill
  2. 2[uncountable, countable, usually singular] a particular type of illness or disease altitude/travel/radiation, etc. sickness a sickness common in the tropics see also sleeping sickness
  3. 3[uncountable] (especially British English) the feeling that you are likely to vomit (= bring food back up from the stomach to the mouth); the fact of vomiting synonym nausea symptoms include sickness and diarrhoea The sickness passed off after a while. see also morning sickness
  4. 4[singular] a feeling of great sadness, disappointment or disgust He felt a sickness rise in him at the thought of leaving. See related entries: Disgust
  5. Word OriginOld English sēocnesse (see sick, -ness).Extra examples Several workers complained of feelings of sickness and headaches. Staff sickness rates are at record levels. The Personnel Department keeps a record of employees absent through sickness. The policy includes long-term sickness cover. The sickness rose inside him. This activity may induce motion sickness. After a few minutes the sickness subsided. Do you need any travel sickness tablets? I recommend you get insurance against sickness and unemployment. She’s been off work because of sickness. Side effects of this medicine may include headaches, sickness and diarrhoea.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: sickness