Types of Dreams – What do Certain Dreams Mean?

Dreams are pictures and narratives created by our minds during sleep. They can be harmless, fun, romantic, entertaining, or downright disturbing, bizarre, and frightening, depending on the types of dreams you have.

They are still greatly a mystery for scientists, with lots of questions that remain unanswered. However, throughout their experiments, scientists do know some things about dreams. Today we’ll discuss the five dream types and their meanings.

There are 5 main types of dreams: normal dreams, daydreams, lucid dreams, false awakening dreams, and nightmares. Whether you remember your dreams or not, most people dream every night during REM sleep.

Quick Fun Facts About Dreams

Here are a few fun facts about dreams:

  • Though you may not remember dreaming, people commonly dream between three and six times per night.
  • Scientists believe dreams last between five and twenty minutes.
  • People don’t remember an estimated 95% of dreams after waking up.

How Many Types of Dreams Are There?

There are five main dream types. Let’s take a look at each of them:

Normal Dreams

Normal dreams are your regular everyday dreams in which you never know you’re dreaming until after you wake up.

These dreams can depict just about anything you can imagine – from walking in Paris with your partner to rap battling against the Pope, nothing is off-limits. You think nothing of these dreams at the time and simply accept them as reality.

Everyone has normal dreams every night. These dreams are primarily found during REM sleep and are considered vital for survival, as some say we would die without dreaming.

If you sleep an average of 8 hours per night, you will dream for around 100 minutes of it. Interestingly enough, longer, more vivid dreams usually occur near the end of your sleep.


Studies have shown that people spend an average of 70 to 120-minutes each day daydreaming. Much like with other dream types, you enter into a sort of hypnotic trance and allow your thoughts to flow; the only difference is you’re awake.

Daydreams can begin with a compelling fantasy, thought, or memory, but your imagination begins to run away with the idea. Some experts believe that daydreaming is the key to learning how to lucid dream.

False Awakening Dreams

Have you ever seen the movie “Groundhog Day” starring Bill Murray?

This is a good way to explain false awakening dreams. Basically, in these dreams, you wake up from your sleep and go about your morning routine. It’s not until you realize halfway to “work” that you’re naked and actually still dreaming. At this point, you usually wake up.

False awakening dreams are usually very vivid, and you feel as if you really just woke up and began your day. Most people don’t realize they’re dreaming, and if you do – congratulations; that’s considered lucid dreaming!

Lucid Dreams

Many people consider lucid dreams to be the best of the dream types. These dreams are very immersive and can be inspirational as it guides the person into infinite possibilities. Lucid dreams will take you wherever you want to go, and it provides the feeling of being completely free!

So, what exactly are lucid dreams? They are dreams where, even though the person is sleeping, they know they or dreaming and/or are able to direct awareness and control the dream. 

This is a great concept to learn because lucid dreams help people fulfill desires and offer insight into their unconscious mind.


Many people begin to research types of dreams and their meanings following a nightmares. They are overall the worst type of dream, and can leave a person seriously shaken.

What are nightmares? Well, in the Western World, they are normal dreams that feature scary twists. Just like with normal dreams, when people are having nightmares they’re not aware they are dreaming. So their subconscious mind is processing everything as if it were real. Some nightmares seem so real that the body’s sensory system is triggered and some even report feeling pain. Nightmares can be extremely unnerving.

Frequently Asked Questions

Now that you understand the five types of dreams, you probably have lots of questions. We’ve compiled some of the most commonly asked questions regarding the types of dreams, dream meanings, etc.

When do we dream?

Dreams can happen at any point when you are sleeping, but are most common during REM (rapid eye movement) sleep.

What is a dream that feels real called?

These are called lucid dreams.

How to have dreams that are positive

There’s not a simple answer for this question. However, some think by doing things such as getting enough sleep nightly, exercising, de-stressing before bed, taking melatonin, and switching sleep positions will help.

Is it normal not to dream?

Yes, it can be normal. However, research has shown that just because you don’t remember that you dreamed, doesn’t mean you didn’t.

What is the most common type of dream?

According to surveys by Amerisleep, the most common types of dreams are normal dreams that depict the person falling, being chased, or going back to school.

How long is a sleep cycle?

There are five stages of sleep, and each stage lasts somewhere between 5 and 30 minutes.

Sleep Cycle Stages

Find out more about the types of dreams in our infographic. What do certain dreams mean? Learn some dream hacks that can help you have sweetest dreams each night.

via puffy.com

Types Of Dreams Infographic

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