help·​ful | \ ˈhelp-fəl How to pronounce helpful (audio) ; Southern often ˈhep- also ˈheəp- \

Definition of helpful

: of service or assistance : useful a helpful neighbor helpful advice just trying to be helpful

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Other Words from helpful

helpfully \ ˈhelp-​fə-​lē How to pronounce helpful (audio) \ adverb
helpfulness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for helpful



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Examples of helpful in a Sentence

A helpful neighbor shoveled our walkway. a kind and helpful person
Recent Examples on the Web Soon, however, there may be enough vaccine to consider studying whether additional vaccination will be helpful. Dr. Keith Roach, oregonlive, "Dear Doctor: Should I double up on COVID-19 vaccine doses?," 7 May 2021 Distractions like listening to music or using a phone can also be helpful. Tara Law, Time, "'Needle Phobia' May Be Keeping Some From Getting Their COVID-19 Vaccine. Here's How to Cope," 7 May 2021 Quick assessments like the ones Davis uses are helpful in that they can be analyzed right away. Talia Richman, Dallas News, "How can a one-minute kindergarten test help teachers tackle the ‘Covid slide?’," 7 May 2021 If so, would one day a week without meetings be helpful? Laura Garnett, Forbes, "9 Questions Every Leader Should Ask Their Team Before Going Back To The Office," 6 May 2021 In studies looking at melanoma, leukemia and pancreatic cancer, the extract appeared to be helpful in coaxing cancer cells to self-destruct, getting the body to kill the cells itself, or slowing down cancer's overall cellular growth. Miriam Fauzia, USA TODAY, "Fact check: Limited study on cancer-fighting potential of dandelion root," 5 May 2021 Also, Facebook comment that the ads were not rejected and Signal could have run them isn’t helpful. Chris Smith, BGR, "Facebook is right: Signal’s viral ads are just a publicity stunt," 5 May 2021 Granted, under the emergency conditions imposed last spring by the coronavirus pandemic, strong disagreement on the Fed board over internal policy decisions wouldn’t have been helpful. Judy Shelton, WSJ, "The Fed Board Agrees Never to Disagree," 4 May 2021 Robert Brewster, chief executive of The Alaska Club, said the lifting of the restrictions is helpful. Alex Demarban, Anchorage Daily News, "Businesses cautiously prepare to boost operations as Anchorage lifts most COVID-19 restrictions," 1 May 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for helpful

see help entry 1

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Time Traveler for helpful

Time Traveler

The first known use of helpful was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

12 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Helpful.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for helpful



English Language Learners Definition of helpful

: making it easier to do a job, deal with a problem, etc. : giving help
: willing to help other people


help·​ful | \ ˈhelp-fəl How to pronounce helpful (audio) \

Kids Definition of helpful

: providing help a helpful idea

Other Words from helpful

helpfully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb

Comments on helpful

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