Definition of preventive in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /prɪˈvɛntɪv/


Designed to keep something undesirable such as illness or harm from occurring: preventive medicine
More example sentences
  • There are some important preventive measures that can be done to avoid a recurrent stroke.
  • The effect of preventive measures on the incidence of ankle sprains.
  • Wider community education is required as a primary preventive measure.
inhibitory, deterrent, pre-emptive, obstructive;
precautionary, protective
prophylactic, disease-preventing, precautionary, protective


A medicine or other treatment designed to prevent disease or ill health: quinine was used as a malaria preventive
More example sentences
  • But don't expect that to stop drug companies from hyping their cholesterol lowering products as preventives for breast cancer.
  • Silicone greases are probably not effective preventives.
  • Eating garlic and plenty of vitamin C are useful anti-viral preventives.



Pronunciation: /prɪˈvɛntɪvli/
Example sentences
  • And the idea behind integrative medicine is to use these things preventively, to try and prevent illness.
  • Patients could carry PKC inhibitors and take them preventively, as soon as they sense a manic episode coming on.
  • These antiviral drugs fight the herpes virus that causes cold sores and can speed healing or be used preventively to thwart outbreaks.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: pre¦vent|ive

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.