trauma

noun
trau·​ma | \ ˈtrȯ-mə How to pronounce trauma (audio) also ˈtrau̇- How to pronounce trauma (audio) \
plural traumas also traumata\ ˈtrȯ-​mə-​tə also  ˈtrau̇-​ How to pronounce traumata (audio) \

Definition of trauma

1a : an injury (such as a wound) to living tissue caused by an extrinsic agent
b : a disordered psychic or behavioral state resulting from severe mental or emotional stress or physical injury
c : an emotional upset the personal trauma of an executive who is not living up to his own expectations— Karen W. Arenson
2 : an agent, force, or mechanism that causes trauma

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Other Words from trauma

traumatically \ trə-​ˈma-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce traumatically (audio) , trȯ-​ , trau̇-​ \ adverb

Did You Know?

Trauma is the Greek word for "wound". Although the Greeks used the term only for physical injuries, nowadays trauma is just as likely to refer to emotional wounds. We now know that a traumatic event can leave psychological symptoms long after any physical injuries have healed. The psychological reaction to emotional trauma now has an established name: post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. It usually occurs after an extremely stressful event, such as wartime combat, a natural disaster, or sexual or physical abuse; its symptoms include depression, anxiety, flashbacks, and recurring nightmares.

Examples of trauma in a Sentence

She never fully recovered from the traumas she suffered during her childhood. She never fully recovered from the trauma of her experiences. an accident victim with severe head trauma repeated trauma to a knee The accident victim sustained multiple traumas.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Yolo County Coroner’s Office later reported the cause of death as blunt force trauma to her head. The Daily Democrat, The Mercury News, "Arrest in killing of woman found dead in CVS parking lot," 5 Aug. 2019 The federal grant for trauma-sensitive schools expires this year. Washington Post, "Baltimore schools’ mission: Help students cope with trauma," 31 July 2019 The federal grant for trauma-sensitive schools expires this year. David Mcfadden, baltimoresun.com, "Baltimore schools’ mission: Help students cope with trauma," 31 July 2019 Arredondo was found dead in his condo in San Jose Del Cabo, Mexico, with signs of blunt force trauma on July 17. Tamar Herman, Billboard, "Mexican Authorities Arrest Suspect in Murder of K-Pop Star Samuel's Father," 31 July 2019 According to the San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office, which publicly identified him Wednesday, Waller died of blunt force trauma to his head and torso. Alex Riggins, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Authorities ID Descanso man likely killed in crash 2 days before body was found," 26 July 2019 Kenneth Walsh, 29, of Chino Hills died of blunt force injuries to his headand his passenger, 33-year-old Miriam Rodriguez of Huntington Beach, died of vehicular blunt force trauma, according to the Orange County coroner’s office. Julia Sclafani, Daily Pilot, "Coroner IDs two people killed in H.B. traffic collision," 25 July 2019 The rescue group brought Socks to a veterinarian, who concluded that the dog had injuries consistent with blunt force trauma, police said. Shannon Larson, courant.com, "New Britain man arrested for abusing pit bull, police say," 16 July 2019 Chester County Coroner Terry Tinker told news outlets the 33-year-old woman died from blunt force trauma Sunday. CBS News, "Woman doing "advanced parachute maneuver" killed while skydiving in South Carolina," 15 July 2019

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

circa 1693, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for trauma

Greek traumat-, trauma wound, alteration of trōma; akin to Greek titrōskein to wound, tetrainein to pierce — more at throw entry 1

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Statistics for trauma

Last Updated

13 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for trauma

The first known use of trauma was circa 1693

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More Definitions for trauma

trauma

noun

English Language Learners Definition of trauma

: a very difficult or unpleasant experience that causes someone to have mental or emotional problems usually for a long time
medical : a serious injury to a person's body

trauma

noun
trau·​ma | \ ˈtrȯ-mə How to pronounce trauma (audio) , ˈtrau̇- How to pronounce trauma (audio) \
plural traumas also traumata\ -​mət-​ə How to pronounce traumata (audio) \

Medical Definition of trauma

1a : an injury (as a wound) to living tissue caused by an extrinsic agent surgical trauma the intra-abdominal organs at greatest risk to athletic trauma are the spleen, pancreas, and kidney— M. R. Eichelberger — see blunt trauma
b : a disordered psychic or behavioral state resulting from mental or emotional stress or physical injury
2 : an agent, force, or mechanism that causes trauma

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More from Merriam-Webster on trauma

Spanish Central: Translation of trauma

Nglish: Translation of trauma for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of trauma for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about trauma

Comments on trauma

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