Supercharge your OET review course! Don’t confine your healthcare vocabulary to textbook terminology. Elevate your test performance by integrating the following idiomatic expressions to your speech and writings.
OET Classes Tips: Idioms about symptoms and conditions.
These are the expressions that you can use to describe someone who looks or feels sick. Some of these idioms refer to illnesses and their symptoms in general (e.g., “in bad shape” and “off-color”) while others refer to particular conditions (e.g., “black out”). So, pay attention to how each expression is used.
- In bad shape – It is used to describe someone who is in poor physical or emotional condition.
Example: He’s in pretty bad shape. So, he decided to hit the gym every weekend.
- Off-color – It is used to describe someone who looks or feels ill.
Example: “You look a bit off-color. Do you want me to take you to the infirmary?”
- Black out – To lose consciousness.
Example: Mike didn’t want to miss a single one of his OET classes, so he attended today’s session despite his high fever. He blacked out halfway through the class.
- Bag of bones – It is used to describe someone who is extremely skinny.
Example: When he came home from his duties, he was a bag of bones.
- Blind as a bat – It is used to describe someone with extremely poor vision.
Example: He forgot his glasses at home—which would probably explain his poor performance in today’s OET classes. Without them, he’s blind as a bat.
- White as a sheet – It is used to describe someone whose face is very pale due to sickness, shock, or fright.
Example: “What happened? You look white as a sheet.”
- Blue/green/pale around the gills – It is used to describe someone who looks sick.
Example: “Are you okay? You look a bit green around the gills.”
OET Classes Tips: Idioms about recovery and health improvement
These are the expressions that you can use to describe someone who is recovering or have recovered from an injury or condition.
- Back on your feet – It is used to refer to someone who has adequately recovered from an injury or illness.
Example: Doctors were baffled over her quick recovery. They couldn’t believe that she’s back on her feet only days after the accident.
- Back into shape – To make an effort, usually through exercise, to become physically fit again. It can be used in or without connection with an injury or health condition.
Example: Lyle knew that he had to get back into shape before searching for a job.
OET Classes Tips: Idioms about death
These are expressions you can use to talk about someone’s death.
- Kick the bucket – A light-hearted way of talking about someone’s passing.
Example: “Stop smoking. You don’t want to kick the bucket in your late 20s right?
- Dead as a doornail – It is used to emphasize someone’s death.
Example: It was obvious that he was dead as a doornail by the time the paramedics arrived.
- Die with your boots on – It is used to refer to someone who died in their prime or while leading an active and healthy lifestyle.
Example: She says she’ll never retire and she’ll probably die with her boots on.