poly·​pha·​sic ˌpä-lē-ˈfā-zik How to pronounce polyphasic (audio)
: consisting of two or more phases

Examples of polyphasic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Some biohackers use the polyphasic sleep pattern to complete more tasks. Adrafinil.com, The Salt Lake Tribune, 15 Aug. 2023 Simon says newborn infants will sleep roughly 18 hours a day in multiple bouts, which is called polyphasic sleep. Carl Engelking, Discover Magazine, 6 Jan. 2017 The fast, as well as Massaro encouraging his followers to engage in polyphasic sleep, a technique in which people sleep for just a few hours at a time, were framed as part of the pathway to enlightenment. Ej Dickson, Rolling Stone, 18 Apr. 2022 Some literature and research suggests that humans are naturally polyphasic sleepers. Jamie Ducharme, Time, 30 Jan. 2018

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'polyphasic.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1922, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of polyphasic was in 1922

Dictionary Entries Near polyphasic

Cite this Entry

“Polyphasic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/polyphasic. Accessed 20 May. 2024.

Medical Definition


poly·​pha·​sic -ˈfā-zik How to pronounce polyphasic (audio)
: of, relating to, or having more than one phase
polyphasic evoked potentials
compare diphasic sense b, monophasic sense 1
: having several periods of activity interrupted by intervening periods of rest in each 24 hours
an infant is essentially polyphasic
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!