If something causes a lot of damage, you can talk about its destructive force or power. Something is destructive when it really messes things up.

The word destructive comes from the Latin destruere which means literally to unbuild. In addition to describing a storm or battle, the word can be used for the things people say as well as do. If your mother's comments about your weight cause you to eat more bon bons, you could say that her remarks were destructive to your diet.

Definitions of destructive
  1. adjective
    causing destruction or much damage
    “a policy that is destructive to the economy”
    destructive criticism”
    annihilating, annihilative, devastating, withering
    wreaking or capable of wreaking complete destruction
    blasting, ruinous
    causing injury or blight; especially affecting with sudden violence or plague or ruin
    cataclysmal, cataclysmic
    severely destructive
    caustic, corrosive, erosive, mordant, vitriolic
    of a substance, especially a strong acid; capable of destroying or eating away by chemical action
    crushing, devastating
    physically or spiritually devastating; often used in combination
    damaging, negative
    designed or tending to discredit, especially without positive or helpful suggestions
    wearing away by friction
    destructive of images used in religious worship; said of religions, such as Islam, in which the representation of living things is prohibited
    ruinously destructive and wasting
    destructive to the spirit or soul
    laying waste
    causing or capable of causing harm
    characterized by or displaying negation or denial or opposition or resistance; having no positive features
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    constructing or tending to construct or improve or promote development
    promoting construction or creation
    formative, plastic, shaping
    forming or capable of forming or molding or fashioning
    capable of forming new cells and tissues
    based on interpretation; not directly expressed
    reconstructive, rehabilitative
    helping to restore to good condition
    concerned with systematic structure in a particular field of study
    characterized by or displaying affirmation or acceptance or certainty etc.
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