AskDefine | Define distressed

Dictionary Definition

distressed adj
1 facing or experiencing financial trouble or difficulty; "the troubled car industry"; "distressed companies need loans and technical advice"; "financially hard-pressed Mexican hotels are lowering their prices"; "we were hard put to meet the mortgage paymentng"; "it was apparent that the magazine was in trouble"; "found themselves in a bad way financially" [syn: hard-pressed, hard put, in a bad way(p), in trouble(p)]
2 generalized feeling of distress [syn: dysphoric, unhappy] [ant: euphoric]
3 suffering severe physical strain or distress; "he dropped out of the race, clearly distressed and having difficulty breathing"; "the victim was in a bad way and needed immediate attention" [syn: stressed, in a bad way(p)]
4 afflicted with or marked by anxious uneasiness or trouble or grief; "too upset to say anything"; "spent many disquieted moments"; "distressed about her son's leaving home"; "lapsed into disturbed sleep"; "worried parents"; "a worried frown"; "one last worried check of the sleeping children" [syn: disquieted, disturbed, upset, worried]

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. anxious or uneasy
  2. In the context of "of merchandise etc}} damaged

Extensive Definition

The word distress has various meanings:-
  • Distress is a kind of suffering or stress.
  • In medicine, distress is stress caused by adverse events. See also fetal distress, respiratory distress.
  • In Maritime and Aircraft terms, distress is defined as "grave and imminent danger to life or person or vessel or aircraft, needing immediate assistance". Such a state is indicated by a mayday radio call.
  • Distress is also used by Search and Rescue services to describe targets in adverse or critical conditions.
  • Distress can also refer to the process whereby materials are worn down by time and natural forces.
  • Distressing in woodworking and the decorative arts is the art of making furniture and household objects look old.
  • In law, distress, or distraint, is the act of seizing goods to compel payment, or the goods thus seized.
  • Distress is a novel by Greg Egan

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

abashed, afflicted, agitated, agonized, annoyed, anxious, badly off, beset, bothered, cast down, chagrined, chapfallen, confused, convulsed, crucified, discomfited, discomforted, discomposed, disconcerted, disquieted, distracted, distrait, disturbed, down to bedrock, embarrassed, feeling the pinch, harassed, hard up, harrowed, hung up, hurt, hurting, ill at ease, ill off, impecunious, in Queer Street, in distress, in narrow circumstances, in pain, in reduced circumstances, in straitened circumstances, inconvenienced, irked, lacerated, land-poor, martyred, martyrized, mortified, narrow, on the edge, on the rack, out of countenance, out of pocket, pained, perturbed, pinched, plagued, poor, poorly off, put to it, put-out, put-upon, puzzled, racked, reduced, short, short of cash, short of funds, short of money, sore beset, squeezed, straitened, strapped, suffering, tormented, tortured, troubled, twisted, uncomfortable, under the harrow, uneasy, unmoneyed, unprosperous, upset, vexed, worried, wounded, wrung
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