dis·ori·ent | \(ˌ)dis-ˈȯr-ē-ˌent \

Definition of disorient 

transitive verb

1a : to cause to lose bearings : displace from normal position or relationship

b : to cause to lose the sense of time, place, or identity

2 : confuse

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Examples of disorient in a Sentence

Thick fog can disorient even an experienced hiker. troops disoriented by the sudden change in battle plans

Recent Examples on the Web

My awe felt disorienting, tipping from euphoria into sheer panic. Angelica Baker, Vogue, "Going One-on-One with Greatness at Michael Jordan’s Summer Camp," 13 July 2018 Dealing with the prognosis of having six months or less to live can leave a patient overwhelmed and disoriented by the news, so having someone by his side to help manage the challenging road ahead can be a tremendous relief. Hospice Cincinnati, Cincinnati.com, "Speaking up for your loved one: How to advocate for your hospice patient," 18 June 2018 Blinded and disoriented, Alt had to feel his way along a fence up the sandy hill to the parking lot where his friends were sleeping in the car. CBS News, "Were the murders of California teens the work of a serial killer?," 9 June 2018 Many volunteers who run the state and local competitions that lead up to Miss America said the change has been disorienting. Valerie Bauerlein, WSJ, "Miss America Organization Split by #MeToo Era Swimsuit Decision," 8 July 2018 And while the body of publicly available information about the Russia scandal is already extensive, the way it has been delivered — scoop after scoop of discrete nuggets of information — has been disorienting and difficult to follow. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "Will Trump Be Meeting With His Counterpart — Or His Handler?," 8 July 2018 Lumines lives and dies by its ability to transport players into an otherworldly, occasionally disorienting dance-music experience, so it is uniquely poised to take the world's first-ever stab at a Switch buzz-and-beats experiment. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Lumines Remastered turns the Nintendo Switch into a full-body vibration party," 26 June 2018 The joint album has been long in the making, Jay-Z said in an interview with The New York Times; the care shows in tracks that can hark back to vintage R&B or delve into eerie, disorienting electronic soundscapes. Jon Pareles, New York Times, "Beyoncé and Jay-Z: The State of the Union Is Strong," 17 June 2018 Footage posted on social media showed Maradona apparently disoriented and being helped to climb stairs at Argentina's 2-1 win over Nigeria on Tuesday. Houston Chronicle, "Mexico, Sweden advance from group stage; defending World Cup champ Germany eliminated," 27 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'disorient.' 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 disorient

1655, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for disorient

French désorienter, from dés- dis- + orienter to orient

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Statistics for disorient

Last Updated

12 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for disorient

The first known use of disorient was in 1655

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English Language Learners Definition of disorient

: to make (someone) lost or confused


transitive verb
dis·ori·ent | \(ˈ)dis-ˈōr-ē-ˌent, -ˈȯr- \

Medical Definition of disorient 

: to produce a state of disorientation in : disorientate the next day the patient was disoriented but not comatoseJournal of the American Medical Association

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