nervous breakdown


Definition of nervous breakdown

: an attack of mental or emotional disorder especially when of sufficient severity to require hospitalization

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Synonyms for nervous breakdown


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Examples of nervous breakdown in a Sentence

She had a nervous breakdown shortly after her sister's death. He is on the verge of a nervous breakdown.
Recent Examples on the Web Beebe had taken over as the punt returner, after rookie K.J. Osborn had continued his campaign to give coach Mike Zimmer a nervous breakdown. Patrick Reusse, Star Tribune, "Vikings' Don Beebe was the unrefined punt returner who gained redemption," 4 Dec. 2020 After the finger-slamming episode, Whitter suffered a nervous breakdown and was admitted to a Jackson Health System mental health treatment center, the suit states. Ron Hurtibise,, "Transgender cashier claims torment by Publix co-workers put her in hospital," 18 Nov. 2020 Simply described, Malina is the story of a celebrated writer’s nervous breakdown and descent into madness. J. Hoberman, The New York Review of Books, "Fall Films to Stream," 5 Nov. 2020 Plath’s stellar academic career at Smith College, a school for women in Northampton, Mass, was marred in the summer of 1953 by an unsettling guest editorship at Mademoiselle that led to a nervous breakdown and a suicide attempt. Washington Post, "Heather Clark’s ‘Red Comet’ is an exhaustively researched, often brilliant biography of Sylvia Plath," 28 Oct. 2020 There's a great monstrous metaphor at play, yet Cummings is the real gem, making an appealing hero out of a dude always five minutes away from a nervous breakdown. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, "What to stream this weekend: Netflix's 'The Forty-Year-Old Version,' 'Hubie Halloween'," 8 Oct. 2020 As the country experiences what feels more and more like a collective nervous breakdown, what better balm can there be than another season of Schitt's Creek? Stuart Emmrich, Vogue, "Surprise! The Final Season of Schitt's Creek Is Now on Netflix," 3 Oct. 2020 The instantly notorious 90-minute bout played out on stage in Cleveland and on social media like something akin to a collective nervous breakdown rather than a reasonable discussion. James Hibberd,, "Trump-Biden dumpster fire debate drops in ratings from 2016," 30 Sep. 2020 His options are to stew inside his own skull while his marker berates him into a nervous breakdown or to act out. Emma Grey Ellis, Wired, "Hulu’s New Comedy Woke Is Perfectly Absurd," 11 Sep. 2020

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

1870, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for nervous breakdown

Time Traveler

The first known use of nervous breakdown was in 1870

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Statistics for nervous breakdown

Last Updated

10 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Nervous breakdown.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for nervous breakdown

nervous breakdown


English Language Learners Definition of nervous breakdown

: a sudden failure of mental health that makes someone unable to live normally

nervous breakdown


Medical Definition of nervous breakdown

: an attack of mental or emotional disorder especially when of sufficient severity to require hospitalization

More from Merriam-Webster on nervous breakdown

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for nervous breakdown

Nglish: Translation of nervous breakdown for Spanish Speakers

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