How to define word-break property to allow words to be continued to the next line in CSS?

In the domain of web development, utilizing cascading style sheets (CSS) effectively is imperative in the creation of visually pleasing and user-friendly websites. One often neglected but essential aspect of CSS is the "word-break" attribute, which is significant in preserving legibility and aesthetic appeal. The "word-break" property bestows upon developers the ability to regulate how words are exhibited and formatted in a particular block element. Through the application of this attribute, developers can guarantee that words are separated and carried over to the next line in a manner that is both visually appealing and comprehensible. This manuscript delineates a systematic approach for defining the "word-break" attribute in CSS, which provides web developers with the tools requisite for constructing sophisticated and user-friendly web pages.


The word-break property in CSS is used to define how words should break when they exceed the available width of their container. By default, words break at the end of a line when they can no longer fit within the available space, but sometimes it's necessary to allow words to continue to the next line without breaking them. In this article, we will explain how to define the word-break property to allow words to be continued to the next line in CSS.

Step 1 − Understanding the word-break property

Commencement of the word-break feature necessitates apprehension of its functionality. The aforesaid attribute can accept multiple values for its assignment, such as −

  • normal − This is the default value, and it allows words to break at the end of a line.

  • break-all − This value allows words to break at any point, even in the middle of a character.

  • keep-all − This value prevents breaks within words that contain non-whitespace characters.

Step 2 − Choosing the right value for your needs

To enable the continuity of words across multiple lines, we require the implementation of the "break-all" parameter. Nonetheless, it should be taken into consideration that the usage of this feature may lead to unforeseen disintegration of some words, and hence, it may not be the optimal choice for all scenarios. If one is constructing a written piece where the formatting is a crucial aspect, it may be preferable to select an alternative parameter.

Step 3 − Applying the property to your text

Once you've decided which value to use, you can apply it to your text using CSS. You can do this by selecting the element that contains your text and adding the word-break property to its style definition. For example −

p {
   word-break: break-all;

This will apply the break-all value to all paragraphs in your document, allowing words to be continued to the next line without breaking them.

Step 4 − Using rarely used words

In addition to defining the word-break property, you may also want to use rarely used words to make your article more interesting and engaging. This can be done by using a thesaurus or other tools to find synonyms for commonly used words. However, it's important to use these words in a way that is natural and doesn't detract from the overall flow of your article.


In the following example, we delineate the property of word-break within the style section of the head segment of the HTML document. We define the word-break property value to break-all, thereby enabling lengthy words to shift to the next line when the width of the container element is insufficient. This is a pragmatic solution to circumvent the hazard of elongated words causing the layout of the page to become chaotic by overflowing.

<!DOCTYPE html>
      <title>How to define word-break property to allow words to be continued to the next line in CSS?</title>
         body {
            width: 500px;
            margin: 0 auto;
            font-size: 16px;
            word-break: break-all;
      <h4>How to define word-break property to allow words to be continued to the next line in CSS?</h4>
         The preceding day was an exquisitely splendid day. 
         The brilliant sun was radiating its warmth and the melodious birds 
         were vocalizing their mirth. I resolved to traverse to the park to 
         luxuriate in the pure air. As I sauntered along the thoroughfare, 
         I encountered a cohort of juveniles engaged in a thrilling round of tag. 
         Their resounding laughter and revelry were so felicitous that it provoked a 
         smile on my face. Following my perambulation, I proceeded to a local coffee 
         house to procure a coffee. During my sojourn in the queue, I inadvertently 
         overheard a dialogue between two companions discussing their imminent escapade 
         to Hawaii. It appeared they were primed to have an enthralling experience 
         surfing and exploring the exotic isles. Whilst I savored my coffee and 
         observed people's demeanor, an overwhelming sense of appreciation for 
         life's simple pleasures engrossed me. Indeed, it's the diminutive moments 
         of glee that make life worthwhile.


To conclude, the word-break feature in CSS bestows an effective resolution to ensure apt wrapping of the text and its comprehensibility for diverse forms of content. By defining this feature with propriety, web designers and developers can ensure the appropriate division of long words and phrases into syllables and also enable its correct hyphe-nation without impairing the fluidity of the text. This can considerably enhance the overall user experience and facilitate access to a website. Thus, it is imperative to acquaint oneself with the seldom-used but efficacious word-break feature to optimize the representation of text on the web.

Updated on: 05-May-2023


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