Common dreams and what they may mean

Have you ever woken up in a cold sweat because of a nightmare? Or spent the morning in a funny mood after a bizarre dream the night before? Understandably, most of us tend not to dwell too long on our dreams—despite centuries of study it is still not fully understood why we even dream at all. Yet with the average person having between three and five dreams per night, psychologists and neurobiologists have a number of theories to offer about why we dream and what our dreams may mean.


Having a baby

This is a very common dream and its interpretation often depends on whether you’re a man or a woman. If you’re a woman, the meaning can also depend on whether you are pregnant or not. It is less common for men to dream of having a baby. But if they do, it often means their virility is compromised. If a woman who is pregnant has this dream, it often simply reflects their excitement. Women who are not pregnant may have this dream when it is the beginning of a new chapter in their lives.


Teeth falling out

This is one of the most common dreams we have—ask anyone you know and they’ve probably dreamt of losing teeth at least once in their life. The most popular interpretation of this dream is that it means you’re anxious or scared about something that’s changing in your life.


Feeling trapped

Lots of people dream about being trapped, restricted, or unable to move. This dream is thought to be related to frustration in a person’s waking life and often appears when someone is stuck in a dead-end job or an unsatisfying relationship. The dream has also been linked with feelings of powerlessness and the inability to make a difference to a situation.



The importance of money in waking life makes it a strong contender for an appearance in our night-time reality. If you’re dreaming about winning money, dream expert Anna-Karin Bjorklund has suggested this means you feel you are winning in another area of your life. Perhaps your career has taken a new, exciting turn.


Taking exams

This is a very common dream and its interpretation often depends on what stage you’re at in life. If you’re a child or teenager still in school, it’s most likely the dream means you’re anxious about upcoming exams.


Running on the spot

Many people dream of trying to run but staying in the same spot. This can often mean you feel you don’t have control of your life.


Being invisible

This dream is surprisingly common and can have two opposite meanings. It can mean that you feel people don’t see or appreciate you enough. Conversely, it can mean that you feel people see you too much and you wish you had more privacy. It is not uncommon for celebrities to dream about being invisible.


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