An analgesic is a medicine that takes away physical pain. If you ask for pain relief, and the nurse says "Here's an analgesic," she's not trying to worsen your headache with a difficult word; she's just giving you a painkiller.

Breaking apart the word analgesic helps with pronunciation, ann-ull-JEE-zick. This isn't a proper root-word study, but the last three letters of the word look like "sick." If you're sick and have some pain and discomfort, you might get relief from an analgesic. As a noun, analgesic is the actual medicine, and as an adjective, it describes the effect of the medicine — a pill will have an analgesic effect, relieving the pain — unless it's really bad pain, in which case you'll need two.

Definitions of analgesic

adj capable of relieving pain

“an analgesic effect”
analgetic, anodyne
lessening in intensity or strength

n a medicine used to relieve pain

anodyne, pain pill, painkiller
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Anacin III, Datril, Panadol, Phenaphen, Tempra, Tylenol, acetaminophen
an analgesic for mild pain but not for inflammation; also used as an antipyretic; (Datril, Tylenol, Panadol, Phenaphen, Tempra, and Anacin III are trademarks of brands of acetaminophen tablets)
acetanilid, acetanilide, phenylacetamide
a white crystalline compound used as an analgesic and also as an antipyretic
acetophenetidin, acetphenetidin, phenacetin
a white crystalline compound used as an analgesic and also as an antipyretic
amidopyrine, aminopyrine
a white crystalline substance used as an analgesic and antipyretic
Bayer, Empirin, St. Joseph, acetylsalicylic acid, aspirin
the acetylated derivative of salicylic acid; used as an analgesic anti-inflammatory drug (trade names Bayer, Empirin, and St. Joseph) usually taken in tablet form; used as an antipyretic; slows clotting of the blood by poisoning platelets
derivative of opium; used as an antitussive (to relieve coughing) and an analgesic (to relieve pain)
an analgesic drug derived from the saffron plant and used to treat gout
Fentanyl, Sublimaze
trade names of a narcotic analgesic that can be inhaled and that acts on the central nervous system and may become addictive; used as a veterinary anesthetic and with other drugs before, during, and after surgery; also used as a nonlethal gas to incapacitate people in hostage situations; also abused as a recreational drug
Dilaudid, hydromorphone, hydromorphone hydrochloride
a narcotic analgesic (trade name Dilaudid) used to treat moderate to severe pain
morphia, morphine
an alkaloid narcotic drug extracted from opium; a powerful, habit-forming narcotic used to relieve pain
Talwin, pentazocine
analgesic drug (trade name Talwin) that is less addictive than morphine
Pyridium, phenazopyridine
analgesic (trade name Pyridium) used to treat urinary tract infections
Darvon, propoxyphene, propoxyphene hydrochloride
a mildly narcotic analgesic drug (trade name Darvon) related to methadone but less addictive
sodium salicylate
a crystalline salt used as an analgesic and antipyretic
a morphine derivative that is not as strong as morphine; used as an emetic and in small doses as a sedative
aspirin powder, headache powder
a powdered form of aspirin
Bufferin, buffered aspirin
aspirin coated with a substance capable of neutralizing acid (trade name Bufferin)
enteric-coated aspirin
aspirin that is treated to pass through the stomach unaltered and to dissolve in the intestines
Type of:
medicament, medication, medicinal drug, medicine
(medicine) something that treats or prevents or alleviates the symptoms of disease

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