ide·​a·​tion | \ ˌī-dē-ˈā-shən How to pronounce ideation (audio) \

Definition of ideation

: the capacity for or the act of forming or entertaining ideas suicidal ideation

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Examples of ideation in a Sentence

caregivers are trained to watch for signs of depression and suicidal ideation—some patients are likely to put their fantasies to action
Recent Examples on the Web Second, the clear sources and causes of depression and suicidal thoughts and ideation are elusive. Seth Mandel, Washington Examiner, "Biden's education abdication," 11 Feb. 2021 According to the report, 28.6 percent of 1,004 online survey respondents reported depression, 18.2 percent reported substance use increase or initiation, and 8.4 percent disclosed suicidal thoughts or ideation. Globe Staff,, "Mental health struggles on the rise during pandemic, CDC report says," 8 Feb. 2021 Bisexual people have some of the highest rates of depression, psychological distress, and suicidal ideation. Kirthan Aujlay,, "One Thing You Should Never Ask A Bisexual Person," 29 Oct. 2020 For her Facebook Watch show, Peace of Mind with Taraji, the Oscar-nominee talked about suicidal ideation in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Brooklyn White, Essence, "These 6 Celebs Got More Vulnerable Than Ever In 2020," 30 Dec. 2020 Constraints challenge teams to think divergently and avoid complacency in the ideation process. Karl Sun, Fortune, "Want to innovate while working remotely? Rethink the way you brainstorm," 22 Dec. 2020 Depression differs from suicidal ideation because everyone who is depressed isn’t suicidal. Olivia Mitchell, cleveland, "Coping through COVID: Mental health officials in Cuyahoga County worry as pandemic heightens attempted suicides, offers resources to the community," 29 Dec. 2020 From ideation to creation to evaluation, intersectional gender data is key to unlocking insights that will sharpen our recovery efforts. Katica Roy, Fortune, "In tackling the country’s biggest problems, Biden and Harris need to prioritize gender and racial equity," 17 Dec. 2020 Research has shown a rise in reports of loneliness, a particular concern for young people, difficulties for those with pre-existing mental health issues and an increase in reports of suicidal ideation. New York Times, "As Pandemic Threatens Britain’s Mental Health, These ‘Fishermen’ Fight Back," 6 Dec. 2020

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

1818, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for ideation

Time Traveler

The first known use of ideation was in 1818

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Statistics for ideation

Last Updated

24 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ideation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for ideation


ide·​a·​tion | \ ˌīd-ē-ˈā-shən How to pronounce ideation (audio) \

Medical Definition of ideation

: the capacity for or the act of forming or entertaining ideas suicidal ideation

More from Merriam-Webster on ideation

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ideation

Britannica English: Translation of ideation for Arabic Speakers

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