to set your teeth on edge

Idiom Definition

Idiom Definition - set your teeth on edge

"to set your teeth on edge"

to greatly irritate or annoy;

to cause someone to be upset, nervous, or uncomfortable


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - set your teeth on edge

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1: What is that horrible sound? It sounds like fingernails on a chalkboard. It is so irritating that it is setting my teeth on edge.

Colleague 2: It is something in the ventilation system. Every couple of months, the noise returns to annoy the hell out of everyone. Then, a technician comes and repairs it and we have peace until it returns again.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - set your teeth on edge

Two friends are talking ...

Friend 1: Could Anabelle be any more fake? Her over-exaggerated show of friendliness to even remote acquaintances is so facile. It really upsets me for some reason.

Friend 2: Just wait until you hear her start talking about all the famous people she supposedly knows.

Friend 1: Doesn't it just set your teeth on edge?

Friend 2: Let's avoid her as best we can.

Test Your Understanding  

to set your teeth on edge - Usage:


Usage Frequency Index:   115   click for frequency by country

to set your teeth on edge - Gerund Form:

Setting my teeth on edge, the neighbors kids would not quit screeching.

to set your teeth on edge - Examples:

1)  The crying still set her teeth on edge, but it didn't fill the universe any more.

2)  Squealing, shrieking and whining set my teeth on edge

3)  ... surrounded by an aura of smug self-righteousness. It honestly does set my teeth on edge

4)  The grating sound set her teeth on edge.

5)  ... but it can still set our teeth on edge like bad table manners. 

6)  ... be about equal with hearing my neighbour's leaf blower. It can set my teeth on edge, but it won't break me down and make me confess to ...

7)  Yesterday's silly little niggle - that set your teeth on edge but didn't seem worth causing a row about - all too often ...

8)  My ex-flatmate talked to cats as if they were babies. It set my teeth on edge in annoyance. 

9)  ... turning it in the lock to avoid that bang which set his teeth on edge. He had repeatedly asked his wife and children to shut the door quietly.

10)  Are there certain sounds that still set your teeth on edge the same way they first did?

11)  In terms of sounds that 'set my teeth on edge': sometimes a door might scrape and evoke a gut reaction.

12)  Her over-the-top, shrill performance will set your teeth on edge.

13)  ... and it has helped to set my teeth on edge every time I think of the prospect of in-laws in general. 

14)  ... ads leave me cold, and those toddlers tearing around in the Hyundai set my teeth on edge.

15)  It was a noise that set one's teeth on edge and bristled the hair at the back of one's neck.

16)  ... before stretching his arms with many a crick and a crack that set Bo's teeth on edge. He was sure bones weren't meant to sound that way.

17)  This week I agreed to look at a free-to-play game that just set my teeth on edge, and it has put me off freemium games.

18)  ... not bear to hear him, it was like something grinding and it set my teeth on edge.

19)  Did the words "there's an app for that" set your teeth on edge?

20)  But the whining, nasal voices with the naff pop music just sets my teeth on edge and I quickly switch off.