When it comes to dreams, most of us experience different, uniquely personal narratives and encounters in our sleep. However, there are some fascinating common themes that seem to recur across cultures and age groups. Psychologists have often looked at people’s dreams as a way to interpret the hidden messages of the subconscious. Common dream schemas are of particular interest, as they may illustrate connections that we all share. One of the most common of these themes is the loss of teeth in a dream. As the most common, it is also the most widely interpreted.
You’re Not Alone
According to one study, as much as 39% of the population has experienced their teeth falling out in a dream. If you’ve ever experienced one of these dreams, you don’t need us to tell you how distressing they can be. Losing a tooth is never a nice experience. Losing them all at once or having them break and crack in your mouth is particularly unpleasant. Some people may wake up wondering if their dream means that they have some problem with their teeth in the real world. There are many theories about what losing or cracking your teeth could mean in a dream. We thought that we would look into this strange phenomenon and find out if you should be worried about your teeth when you are having these dreams.
So What Does it Mean?
One of the most common explanations for the tooth loss dream is that it is connected to stress and anxiety. This theory states that the experience of loss in dreams is connected to a sense of powerlessness in life. This could be connected to problems at work or needing to make a big decision in your life. However, not everyone thinks that psychological explanations for teeth loss dreams necessarily need to be negative. The dreams have also been connected to moments of personal growth, or renewed strength and self-esteem. Whether positive or negative though, these explanations all share the fact that they assume this phenomenon is connected to unconscious thoughts or feelings that manifest themselves in your dream world.
It Might be More Real Than You Think
A new study has brought that assumption into question, offering a different possible explanation. By looking at a wide range of people that reported experiencing tooth loss or cracking in their dreams, they identified a strong correlation between the dreams and real-world dental distress. External stimuli being incorporated into dreams has regularly been observed so this would not be hugely surprising. The study did not find a connection between self-reported teeth grinding and tooth loss dreams. It did identify a connection with dental irritation of a variety of types though.
Many people are not aware that they grind their teeth. It is possible that people are experiencing teeth grinding while having these dreams without knowing about it. As with any study of this type, it is impossible to know if the dental irritation is the cause of the dreams. It is also possible that the dreams cause teeth grinding or clenching that subsequently causes the irritation. One thing is certain though, if you are experiencing regular tooth loss or cracking dreams it may actually be your subconscious trying to tell you that it is time for a visit to the dentist!
What if I am Grinding My Teeth?
If you discover that you are grinding your teeth or clenching in your sleep, be sure to take a look at our custom-fitted night guards before purchasing one through your dentist. By cutting out the middle man, we can offer our customers premium quality and comfort at a much lower price than any dentist. If you have any questions at all about how to protect against teeth grinding, please don’t hesitate to contact our team.