I'm looking for a word or short phrase that means something that is not distracting. More specifically, something previously distracting that has since faded into... well, I don't know into what.

So I have this:

"A serious injury to a limb will often cause pain and agitation when using that extremity. A broken leg, for example, will be incredibly painful to walk on.

Minor wounds such as cuts or bruises typically heal quickly, often becoming [no longer distracting] within a few hours."

Any ideas? I looked for antonyms of bother and distract and such, but they were all too positive or not very specific, like "calm" or "soothe" or "not bother". I'm looking more for something that the subject is indifferent to.

The current structure isn't critical, so rewrites are possible, but a single word would be better.

  • 1
    Maybe "unnoticeable" or one of its synonyms (insignificant, negligible, trivial)?
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Nov 27, 2014 at 10:50
  • 1
    From the body of your question, I get the impression that you aren't looking for the opposite of distraction, but a word to describe a state in which a distraction has become neutralized. That's really more of a negation than a polar opposite. In this case a true opposite would be a word that meant something like "attention sharpener" or "focus retainer."
    – Sven Yargs
    Commented Nov 27, 2014 at 17:12
  • I might say "only a minor irritation".
    – Hot Licks
    Commented Nov 28, 2014 at 1:54
  • @SvenYargs You are exactly right. I have edited the question to make it a little more clear. Commented Nov 28, 2014 at 15:38

4 Answers 4


Negligible--a discomfort or disappointment so unimportant as to be not worth considering; insignificant. In the example furnished we can say 'the pain is negligible; had become negligible'.

  • I think this is the closest to what I'm looking for. It definitely fits in my sentence so I'll be using this for now. Thanks for your help. Commented Dec 2, 2014 at 15:56

'Insignificant' would, I think, best suit your requirements. Not a polar opposite, such as 'fixation', for example.

  • My hesitation is that wounds may become insignificant as far as attention is concerned, but not necessarily insignificant in general. Commented Nov 28, 2014 at 15:40
  • Regardless, this is an excellent suggestion and I'm considering just using it unless/until something more specific comes along. Commented Nov 28, 2014 at 15:41

Might I offer -> Forgotten

Upon reading the details, it seems to suit your question.


  • Great suggestion. And under the thesaurus, it mentions "unnoticed" (a form of which Dan Bron mentioned above) which I am also considering. Commented Nov 28, 2014 at 15:42
  • @CalvinScherle, I like "unnoticed" in regards to the question. Must keep that in mind, again.
    – Maria R
    Commented Nov 28, 2014 at 18:49

Minor wounds such as cuts or bruises typically heal quickly and will stop irritating within a few hours.

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