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impulsive

[im-puhl-siv] /ɪmˈpʌl sɪv/
adjective
1.
actuated or swayed by emotional or involuntary impulses:
an impulsive child.
2.
having the power or effect of impelling; characterized by impulsion:
impulsive forces.
3.
inciting to action:
the impulsive effects of a revolutionary idea.
4.
Mechanics. (of forces) acting momentarily; not continuous.
Origin
late Middle English
1375-1425
1375-1425 for an earlier sense; 1545-55 for current senses; late Middle English impulsif < Medieval Latin impulsīvus. See impulse, -ive
Related forms
impulsively, adverb
impulsiveness, impulsivity, noun
nonimpulsive, adjective
nonimpulsively, adverb
nonimpulsiveness, noun
unimpulsive, adjective
unimpulsively, adverb
Can be confused
compulsive, impulsive, impetuous (see synonym study at impetuous)
Synonyms
1. rash, quick, hasty. See impetuous.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for impulsivity
  • The group was a mix of those who had tested high and those who had tested low on impulsivity.
  • Medications may be needed to control behavior problems caused by a loss of judgement, increased impulsivity, and confusion.
British Dictionary definitions for impulsivity

impulsive

/ɪmˈpʌlsɪv/
adjective
1.
characterized by actions based on sudden desires, whims, or inclinations rather than careful thought: an impulsive man
2.
based on emotional impulses or whims; spontaneous: an impulsive kiss
3.
forceful, inciting, or impelling
4.
(of physical forces) acting for a short time; not continuous
5.
(of a sound) brief, loud, and having a wide frequency range
Derived Forms
impulsively, adverb
impulsiveness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for impulsivity
n.

1891; see impulsive + -ity.

impulsive

adj.

early 15c., originally in reference to medicine that reduces swelling or humors, from Middle French impulsif or directly from Medieval Latin impulsivus, from Latin impuls-, past participle stem of impellere (see impel). Of persons, "rash, characterized by impulses," from 1847.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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impulsivity in Medicine

impulsive im·pul·sive (ĭm-pŭl'sĭv)
adj.

  1. Inclined or tending to act on impulse rather than thought.

  2. Motivated by or resulting from impulse.


im·pul'sive·ness or im'pul·siv'i·ty n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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