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strain noun

1 severe demand on strength, resources, etc.

ADJ. considerable, enormous, great, heavy, real, severe, terrible, tremendous It's a real strain having to get up so early! | slight | increasing | constant | excessive, intolerable, unbearable, undue | emotional, financial, mental, nervous, physical, psychological The mental strain of sharing an office with Alison was starting to tell. | breaking a fishing line with a 15lb breaking strain

VERB + STRAIN be/come under, feel, suffer (from) Television newsreaders come under enormous strain. After weeks of overtime, she was starting to feel the strain. | cause, create, impose, place, put Increasing demand is placing undue strain on services. | ease, reduce | cope with, stand, take | increase

STRAIN + VERB show, take its toll (on sb), tell (on sb) After six weeks of uncertainty, the strain was beginning to take its toll.

PREP. under the ~ The ice gave way under the strain. He broke under the strain of having to work twelve hours a day. | ~ on There's too much strain on the corner of the table.

PHRASES a bit of a strain I found it a bit of a strain making conversation with her. | signs of strain After three years, their marriage was beginning to show signs of strain. | stresses and strains the stresses and strains of a long day | take the strain off sb/out of sth The new scheme is designed to take the strain out of shopping.

2 injury

ADJ. bad | slight | back, eye, muscle, thigh, etc.

VERB + STRAIN have, be suffering from | get You'll get eye strain if you don't put the light on. | recover from, shake off Gerrard will play if he can shake off a slight thigh strain.