Hyphenating your document in Word 13

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We have just typed a long document and we are not satisfied on the way it looks. We have fully justified the document but the words are so stretched out that it doesn’t look so neat. What can we do about it? We can easily hyphenate our document in order to give it a more professional look. The steps below will describe the procedure on how to hyphenate our document.

We can easily set Word to hyphenate our document either from the beginning or to have it hyphenated at the end.

First we must select the Page Layout tab and from the area of the ribbon named Page Setup we select the arrow right of the command Hyphenation. The drop down menu appears where we can select from the following commands:

None: It is activated by default, meaning that we haven’t hyphenated our document.

Hyphenation None

Automatic: It automatically hyphenates our document as we type where it is needed.

Hyphenation Automatic

Manual: Once activated the Manual Hyphenation dialog box appears asking as where we want to hyphenate a specific word.

Hyphenation Manual

If we agree at the spot that the word is highlighted as shown in the image below we press the Yes button and move on to the next word, and so on. If we select the No button the word will not be hyphenated and we will move on to the next word. If we select the Cancel button the hyphenation will be cancelled.

Manual Hyphenation

When we use the Manual option to hyphenate our document, Word leads us through the entire document asking us about each word it wants to hyphenate until we reach at the end of it.

If we are not satisfied with the way that Word hyphenates our document we can gain more control on the Hyphenation Options by selecting the command from the drop down menu of Hyphenation.

Hyphenation Options

Once the Hyphenation Options command is selected the Hyphenation dialog box appears as shown below.


This dialog box offers us the following commands:

  • Automatically Hyphenate Document: By activating this check box, Word will hyphenate our document automatically.
  • Hyphenate Words in Caps: By activating or de-activating the check box, Word will hyphenate or not words that are written in capital.
  • Hyphenation Zone: This zone is the area where Word tries to end each line. If we make this zone larger, Word will hyphenate more words but the result of lines that look spaced out will not look very good.
  • Limit Consecutive Hyphens To: Having two or three hyphens in a row is okay, but having more than that is not good aesthetically. So it is a good idea to set the limit to a default number on how many consecutive hyphens we want in a row.

Once we have done all the settings we press the OK button to return to our document.

Once we have finished hyphenating our document a warning dialog box appears notifying us the Hyphenation is complete.

Hyphenation is Complete

Some tips about hyphenating a document in Word:

Word uses its own dictionary on where to hyphenate a word. Probably this dictionary is better than us.

Don’t hyphenate a word on your own by simply typing a hyphen. It may work for now but if we edit our document later, it probably not be at the end of the line anymore.

Below is a video showing you the procedure on how to Hyphenate your document in Word 13.

Hyphenating your document in Word 13

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