W3S2 [ˈılnıs] n [U and C]
a disease of the body or mind, or the condition of being ill
She had all the normal childhood illnesses .
I'd been told I'd been suffering from various illnesses .
Her mother was just recovering from an illness .
Have you ever had any serious illnesses ?
He died in hospital yesterday after a short illness .
patients with chronic illnesses
Her husband was diagnosed with a terminal illness . (=doctors found that her husband had a terminal illness)
Stress can cause mental illness .
I've never missed a day's work through illness in my life.
ways to improve your health and reduce the risk of illness
COLLOCATES for sense 1
have an illness/suffer from an illness
recover from an illness
serious illness
minor illness
short/long illness
childhood illness
acute illness (=an illness that becomes serious very quickly)
chronic illness (=an illness that lasts a long time and cannot be cured)
fatal illness (=an illness which causes death)
terminal illness (=an illness which cannot be cured and that causes death, often slowly)
mental illness
the symptoms of an illness (=the things that show that someone has it)
through illness (=because of illness)
WORD CHOICE: illness, disease
Illness and disease are often used in the same way and are equally common in spoken English.
However, illness is more often used to refer to the length of time or state of being unwell : He died after a long illness. | if you are off school because of illness
!! Do not use illness to talk about less serious problems such as headaches or colds.
Disease is a particular kind of illness, especially one that spreads from one person to another or affects a particular part of your body : infectious diseases | heart disease
!! Disease can also be used to mean a lot of different diseases : Cigarette smoking causes death and disease.

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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  • Illness — (sometimes referred to as ill health or ail) can be defined as a state of poor health. It is sometimes considered a synonym for disease. [DorlandsDict|four/000052397|illness] Others maintain that fine distinctions exist.cite journal |author=Emson …   Wikipedia

  • Illness — Ill ness, n. [From {Ill}.] 1. The condition of being ill, evil, or bad; badness; unfavorableness. [Obs.] The illness of the weather. Locke. [1913 Webster] 2. Disease; indisposition; malady; disorder of health; sickness; as, a short or a severe… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • illness — I noun affliction, ailing, ailment, complaint, defect, disability, disease, disorder, infirmity, malady, prostration, sickness associated concepts: mental illness, terminal illness, Unemployment Compensation, Workers Compensation Law II index …   Law dictionary

  • illness — (n.) disease, sickness, 1680s, from ILL (Cf. ill) + NESS (Cf. ness). Earlier it meant bad moral quality (c.1500) …   Etymology dictionary

  • illness — [n] disease; bad health affliction, ailing, ailment, attack, breakdown, bug*, collapse, complaint, confinement, convalescence, disability, diseasedness, disorder, disturbance, dose, failing health, fit, flu, ill health, indisposition, infirmity,… …   New thesaurus

  • illness — ► NOUN ▪ a disease or period of sickness …   English terms dictionary

  • illness — [il′nis] n. 1. the condition of being ill, or in poor health; sickness; disease 2. Obs. wickedness …   English World dictionary

  • illness — noun ADJECTIVE ▪ deadly, fatal, incurable, terminal ▪ catastrophic (AmE, law), critical, dangerous, debilitating, devastating …   Collocations dictionary

  • illness */*/*/ — UK [ˈɪlnəs] / US noun Word forms illness : singular illness plural illnesses Other ways of saying illness: disease a serious illness that usually lasts a long time, often one that affects a particular part of the body: tropical diseases ♦ She has …   English dictionary

  • illness*/*/*/ — [ˈɪlnəs] noun 1) [U] the state of feeling ill or having a disease He missed five days of school because of illness.[/ex] 2) [C] a particular disease, or a period of being ill a serious illness[/ex] • Other ways of saying illness ■ bug (informal)… …   Dictionary for writing and speaking English

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