Use the noun narcotic to talk about a pain relieving or sleep inducing drug and the adjective narcotic to describe anything that has these same effects.

Patients who have their wisdom teeth removed are often given a narcotic to ease their pain afterward. A numbing drug is usually just what they need to recover — that and plenty of ice cream. If a hot bath and a cup of tea make you incredibly drowsy, you can say that they have a narcotic effect on you. In the United States, narcotic drugs are illegal without a doctor's prescription — narcotic often has a negative connotation, especially when it's used in news reports.

Definitions of narcotic

n a drug that produces numbness or stupor; often taken for pleasure or to reduce pain; extensive use can lead to addiction

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hard drug
a narcotic that is considered relatively strong and likely to cause addiction
Demerol, meperidine, meperidine hydrochloride
a synthetic narcotic drug (trade name Demerol) used to treat pain
dolophine hydrochloride, fixer, methadon, methadone, methadone hydrochloride, synthetic heroin
synthetic narcotic drug similar to morphine but less habit-forming; used in narcotic detoxification and maintenance of heroin addiction
a narcotic drug that contains opium or an opium derivative
an addictive narcotic extracted from seed capsules of the opium poppy
recreational drug
a narcotic drug that is used only occasionally and is claimed to be nonaddictive
soft drug
a drug of abuse that is considered relatively mild and not likely to cause addiction
a preparation of the leaves and flowers of the hemp plant; much used in India
cannabis, ganja, marihuana, marijuana
the most commonly used illicit drug; considered a soft drug, it consists of the dried leaves of the hemp plant; smoked or chewed for euphoric effect
cocain, cocaine
a narcotic (alkaloid) extracted from coca leaves; used as a surface anesthetic or taken for pleasure; can become powerfully addictive
derivative of opium; used as an antitussive (to relieve coughing) and an analgesic (to relieve pain)
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
haschisch, hash, hasheesh, hashish
purified resinous extract of the hemp plant; used as a hallucinogen
diacetylmorphine, heroin
a narcotic that is considered a hard drug; a highly addictive morphine derivative; intravenous injection provides the fastest and most intense rush
laudanum, tincture of opium
narcotic consisting of an alcohol solution of opium or any preparation in which opium is the main ingredient
morphia, morphine
an alkaloid narcotic drug extracted from opium; a powerful, habit-forming narcotic used to relieve pain
Type of:
a substance that is used as a medicine or narcotic

adj of or relating to or designating narcotics

narcotic addicts”
narcotic stupor”

adj inducing stupor or narcosis

narcotic drugs”
narcotising, narcotizing
capable of depressing physiological or psychological activity or response by a chemical agent

adj inducing mental lethargy

“a narcotic speech”
soporiferous, soporific
arousing no interest or attention or curiosity or excitement

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