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Let’s talk about dreaming. As a neuroscience student, I have spent many lectures learning about dreams and REM sleep. REM stands for rapid eye movement, and it’s the stage of sleep we do most of our dreaming in. So let’s clear up a common misconception, does everyone dream? From what we understand, everyone does dream, even if they don’t remember them. The reason some people think they don’t is because they might have very low dream recall compared to others. Now the question is, what do our dreams mean and why do we do it? There are many theories about why we dream, and it isn’t completely known yet. Many think we need dreams to support our mental health, and some don’t think we need them at all. I think that our dreams are often a window into our subconscious and reflect what anxieties we may have. With a little bit of research I have made a list of common dreams and what they might mean. If you are a sucker for symbolism, read below and see what your dreams might secretly be trying to tell you.

Dreams About Falling

Dreams about falling are very common and there is even one study that tried to pinpoint exactly what they stand for. It has been said that dreams about falling often mean that something in your life isn’t going the way you want it to. Try letting go more and think twice about the choices you are making in life.

Dreams About Animals 

According to some theorists, if there is an animal in your dream this could suggest that you need to try and turn to your instinctive nature for answers. This can also relate to your primitive desires or the untamed aspects of your life.

Dreams About Dying 

Death is a very sensitive topic and not one we talk about often. People often dream about death because of this lack of understanding and fear of the unknown. This is an anxiety that a lot of people struggle with, and there are many ways to try and ease this fear if this is something you struggle with.

Dreams About Flying 

Dreams about flying can represent two very conflicting things. On one hand, some think it represents a feeling of freedom and independence, for example if you just moved into your own place. On the other hand, it could maybe represent the feeling that you need to escape a situation. 

Dreams About Someone Chasing You 

This is one you may have heard of before. If you are dreaming about someone chasing you, it could be because you are running from something or someone. This could suggest you are avoiding something in your daily life. 

Dreams About an Alien Encounter

Maybe this one is just me, but I have definitely had a dream about aliens once or twice. Dreaming about aliens could mean you are worrying about a mysterious part of your own life that you may not understand yet. 

Dreams About Losing Your Teeth 

This one has a few theories. Some say if you had a dream you lost your teeth you may be feeling insecure about your appearance, which could suggest a fear of how you present yourself. Repeating positive affirmations and learning to feel comfortable in your own body could be the tips you need to start feeling more confident. 

If you’re a believer in deeper meaning, then hopefully you have learned something new about yourself while reading these theories. If recalling dreams is something you struggle with, keeping a dream journal can be a good way to reflect on your dreams and thoughts. These speculations about dreams could help you realize that something may be on your mind more than you think, literally. 


All images courtesy of HC Media Library 

Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4

Abbey LeClair

U Mass Amherst '22

Abbey LeClair is a senior at the University of Massachusetts - Amherst, majoring in Psychology on the Neuroscience track. She loves to spend her time hanging out with friends, listening to music, and dancing for the UMass Dance Club. Feel free to follow her on Instagram: @abbeyleclair
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