Printable Version
Pronunciation: dis-for-ri-ê Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun, mass (No plural)

Meaning: A state of feeling unhappy, depressed, a sense of distress.

Notes: The antonym of today's word is euphoria "a sense of well-being, elation". The adjective is dysphoric, which may be used as a noun referring to someone who is dysphoric. Just remember it's Y, not I, in the prefix.

In Play: Transgender is a medical problem that has been misplaced in the US today as a political issue: "Effective medical treatment is available to children diagnosed with gender dysphoria according to a recent Mayo Clinic study." There are other causes of dysphoria: "Bipolar disorder is characterized by periods of euphoria alternating with periods of dysphoria."

Word History: Today's rather questionable "Good" Word comprises dys- "bad, difficult, imperfect" + -phor(os) "bearing, suffering" + -ia, an abstract noun suffix. Dys- comes from PIE dus- "bad, foul" also found in Sanskrit dus- "wrong, bad" and Russian dozhd', Slovak dážď, and Polish deszcz—all meaning "rain (foul weather"). -Phoros is the action noun from pherein "to carry, bear", from PIE bher- "to carry, bear", source also of Sanskrit bharati "carries, brings", Latin ferre "to carry, bear", English (to) bear and bairn, Russian brat' "to take" and bremya "burden", Armenian berem "to bring", Irish beir "to give birth to", Welsh barn "opinion, judgement", Icelandic bera "to carry, endure", and Lithuanian bernas "boy".

Dr. Goodword,

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