Definition of cold turkey in English:

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cold turkey

Pronunciation: /ˈkōl(d) ˈˌtərkē/


The abrupt and complete cessation of taking a drug to which one is addicted: cold turkey, with no medication, is not recommended for those with medical conditions
More example sentences
  • Fantasy junkies know they can't go cold turkey, though.
  • If you need to go cold turkey, you need to go cold turkey.
  • So, I admit that those who go cold turkey may go through a rough time with withdrawals initially, but the majority are still non-smokers after one year.


chiefly North American
In a sudden and abrupt manner: many banks have cut commercial builders off cold turkey
More example sentences
  • ‘Last September I quit smoking and drinking cold turkey,’ said Tarr.
  • After you've turned citizens into junkies, with government as the pusher, it's very hard to turn them back again, and even harder to get them to quit cold turkey.
  • A network spokesperson says that doesn't mean he's quitting the news biz cold turkey.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: cold tur·key

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