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impair Syllabification: im·pair
Pronunciation: /imˈper/

Definition of impair in English:


[with object]
Weaken or damage something (especially a human faculty or function): drug use that impairs job performance
More example sentences
  • Driving in an intoxicated state makes a person prone to accidents as alcohol impairs judgement and slows reflexes.
  • Chronic inflammation can result in irreversible scarring of lung tissue, which impairs lung function.
  • There has long been speculation that excessive accumulation of starch may impair chloroplast function.
have a negative effect on, damage, harm, diminish, reduce, weaken, lessen, decrease, impede, hinder, hobble;
formal vitiate


Middle English enpeire, from Old French empeirier, based on late Latin pejorare (from Latin pejor 'worse'). The current spelling is due to association with words derived from Latin beginning with im-.

Words that rhyme with impair

affair, affaire, air, Altair, Althusser, Anvers, Apollinaire, Astaire, aware, Ayer, Ayr, bare, bear, bêche-de-mer, beware, billionaire, Blair, blare, Bonaire, cafetière, care, chair, chargé d'affaires, chemin de fer, Cher, Clair, Claire, Clare, commissionaire, compare, concessionaire, cordon sanitaire, couvert, Daguerre, dare, debonair, declare, derrière, despair, doctrinaire, éclair, e'er, elsewhere, ensnare, ere, extraordinaire, Eyre, fair, fare, fayre, Finisterre, flair, flare, Folies-Bergère, forbear, forswear, foursquare, glair, glare, hair, hare, heir, Herr, jardinière, Khmer, Kildare, La Bruyère, lair, laissez-faire, legionnaire, luminaire, mal de mer, mare, mayor, meunière, mid-air, millionaire, misère, Mon-Khmer, multimillionaire, ne'er, Niger, nom de guerre, outstare, outwear, pair, pare, parterre, pear, père, pied-à-terre, Pierre, plein-air, prayer, questionnaire, rare, ready-to-wear, rivière, Rosslare, Santander, savoir faire, scare, secretaire, share, snare, solitaire, Soufrière, spare, square, stair, stare, surface-to-air, swear, Tailleferre, tare, tear, their, there, they're, vin ordinaire, Voltaire, ware, wear, Weston-super-Mare, where, yeah
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