bi·​po·​lar | \ (ˌ)bī-ˈpō-lər How to pronounce bipolar (audio) \

Definition of bipolar

1 : having or marked by two mutually repellent forces or diametrically opposed natures or views
2a : having or involving the use of two poles or polarities bipolar generators bipolar ECG leads
b electronics : relating to, being, or using a transistor in which both electrons and holes (see hole entry 1 sense 1b(3)) are utilized as charge carriers (see carrier sense 2e)
3 : relating to, associated with, or occurring in both polar (see polar entry 1 sense 1a) regions bipolar species of birds
4 psychology : being, characteristic of, or affected with a bipolar disorder bipolar patients

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Other Words from bipolar

bipolarity \ ˌbī-​pō-​ˈler-​ə-​tē How to pronounce bipolarity (audio) , -​ˈla-​rə-​ \ noun
bipolarization \ (ˌ)bī-​ˌpō-​lə-​rə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce bipolarization (audio) \ noun
bipolarize \ (ˌ)bī-​ˈpō-​lə-​ˌrīz How to pronounce bipolarize (audio) \ transitive verb

Examples of bipolar in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Now, his portrayal of a bipolar rap hype man is earning early Emmy buzz. Los Angeles Times, "How a white rapper’s sidekick became a breakout sitcom star — and TV’s unlikeliest role model," 15 Apr. 2020 The standoff has created the impression that automakers have taken sides in a bipolar battle that pits green-leaning carmakers against fossil fuel die-hards. Russ Mitchell,, "The electric Mustang is just the start of Ford’s drive to hit 50 mpg in 6 years," 3 Dec. 2019 Selena Gomez openly discussed her bipolar diagnosis for the first time with Miley Cyrus on her Bright Minded Instagram Live series Friday. Heran Mamo, The Hollywood Reporter, "Selena Gomez Reveals Bipolar Diagnosis," 3 Apr. 2020 On Instagram, she's shared her bipolar diagnosis, a suicide attempt at 19 and her struggle to accept herself. Scottie Andrew, CNN, "She is the first openly bisexual contestant in Miss USA's 68-year history," 23 Jan. 2020 As the jail population has dropped in recent years, a greater percentage of the inmates who remain at Rikers have a history of mental illness, from schizophrenia to bipolar and depression disorders. New York Times, "‘They Saw Him Hanging and Did Nothing’: A Teen’s Agony in Rikers," 12 Dec. 2019 Show star Claire Danes, who plays the brilliant and bipolar CIA agent Carrie Mathison, was also bummed about Max’s demise. Joe Flint, WSJ, "‘Homeland’ Tends to Kill Off Its Stars. How Is Max Piotrowski Still Alive?," 3 Feb. 2020 In addition to autism, Coyne also lives with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and bipolar. Caitlin O'kane, CBS News, "No one would hire this man with autism. He opened his own coffee shop and now hires employees with special needs," 2 Dec. 2019 While on the pricier side, this skin tightening machine uses the latest bipolar radio frequency technology, which the brand says stimulates collagen and elastin production. Popular Science, "Delightful devices for at-home facials," 6 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bipolar.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bipolar

1806, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

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Time Traveler for bipolar

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The first known use of bipolar was in 1806

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Statistics for bipolar

Last Updated

19 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Bipolar.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for bipolar


bi·​po·​lar | \ (ˈ)bī-ˈpō-lər \

Medical Definition of bipolar

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : involving or being electrodes or leads attached to two different bodily sites (such as the arms and legs) for recording the difference in electrical potential between the two sites bipolar encephalograph leads
2 of a neuron : having an efferent and an afferent process
3 : being, characteristic of, or affected with a bipolar disorder bipolar depression bipolar patients — compare unipolar



Medical Definition of bipolar (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person affected with bipolar disorder

More from Merriam-Webster on bipolar

Nglish: Translation of bipolar for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bipolar for Arabic Speakers

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