Definition of cold turkey in English:

cold turkey

Line breaks: cold tur¦key


[mass noun]
  • 1The abrupt and complete cessation of taking a drug to which one is addicted: I had to go cold turkey
    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.
  • 1.1The unpleasant symptoms caused by suddenly ceasing to take a drug to which one is addicted: stopping the drug may result in cold turkey
    More example sentences
    • Over six weeks he gradually reduced his intake of the new drug to nil, and then went through cold turkey as he experienced the symptoms of methadone withdrawal.
    • Addicts are prescribed dihydrocodeine to make their cold turkey manageable when they're at sea, but there's also a black market for prescribed drugs here.
    • But it is hugely addictive, and when you stop doing it, it is like horrendous cold turkey.


chiefly North American Back to top  
  • In a sudden and abrupt manner: I had to quit drinking 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.

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Word of the day coloratura
Pronunciation: ˌkɒlərəˈtjʊərə
elaborate ornamentation of a vocal melody