- 1a feeling of great worry or unhappiness; great suffering The newspaper article caused the actor considerable distress. She was obviously in distress after the attack. deep emotional distress
- 2suffering and problems caused by not having enough money, food, etc. synonym hardship economic/financial distress The charity aims to relieve poverty and distress caused by natural disasters.
- 3a situation in which a ship, plane, etc. is in danger or difficulty and needs help a distress signal (= a message asking for help) It is a rule of the sea to help another boat in distress. Idioms
a woman who needs help
a damsel in distress (humorous)jump to other results