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What Does It Mean If You Dream About Someone Being Sick?

 
By Nidhi Nangia. Updated: December 10, 2018
What Does It Mean If You Dream About Someone Being Sick?

When we become ill, we don't always consciously recognize the effects, even if we are changing on a cellular level. For viral infections, this is known as the incubation period[1]. This is the time when the infection begins, but there yet to be any symptoms. If an illness is impending, we might not know it consciously, but this doesn't mean our subconscious remains ignorant. However, dreaming about illness doesn't necessarily mean you're going to get sick. There are lots of psychological concerns which might be weighing upon us which manifest themselves as dreams about illness. oneHOWTO looks into some of these interpretations by answering what does it mean if you dream about someone being sick?

You may also be interested in: What Does Dreaming About Being Kidnapped Mean?

Dreaming of being sick and your health

As we said in the introduction, dreaming of being sick might be an indication there is a physical problem. However, this is not exclusive and there are many interpretations of the same symptoms experienced in a dream. Here are some considerations you make when dreaming of illness:

  • Choking: if you had a dream of choking, and if you wake up distressed, then this may indicate an upcoming cold. As your immune system identified the virus, changes in your body start taking place. However, the symptoms may take a few days to become noticeable physically. A dream of choking has direct relevance to your body’s reaction to the illness, which is choking because your throat is inflamed. If you dream of choking, it may be a warning sign of an upcoming cold. You might want to use this time to drink herbal teas, gargle with salt water or generally improve your immune system.
  • Nightmares: it is easy to think that a dream about being ill is a nightmare, but not always. However, if you have a nightmare in general, it might be a sign of illness. Most of the time, nightmares are nothing to worry about, but frequent nightmares may indicate some serious issue with your health. Frequent nightmares are often linked with heart disease. An irregular heartbeat increases the risk of having nightmares. Heart disease may reduce the amount of oxygen in your brain, triggering a nightmare. Another cause of frequent nightmares may be sleep apnea. It is a chronic condition which takes place when your breath pauses or becomes shallow during sleep. Such pauses in your breath reduce oxygen and disturb your REM sleep. Terrifying dreams of suffocation or drowning may indicate that your airway is blocked and you are having trouble breathing during sleep.
  • Frequency of dreams: usually, people have 4-6 dreams every night, but most don’t remember all of them. We often remember a dream only if we wake up during the middle or if it recently finished. Anxiety, depression and other mood disorders may increase the frequency of your dreams. Due to this, you might wake up more frequently during your sleep and remember more of your dreams. A good idea is to keep a journal by your bed side. Keep noting the dreams that you see during a night. Even if you are not aware of the fact that you have a mood disorder, your dreams frequency may indicate otherwise. Other causes of increased frequency of dreams may be being too cold or too hot in the bedroom, antidepressants or chronic pain. Your hormones may also have impact on the number and frequency of your dreams.
  • Bizarre, memorable dreams: such dreams may occur due to a variety of health related conditions, including neurodegenerative conditions such as Parkinson’s disease. Sometimes, such dreams may also indicate an infection. Infections may increase slow wave sleep. Due to this, the dream sleep starts late and erupts into consciousness. This may lead to memorable dreams that stay with you even after you wake up. Some people even experience strange hallucinations just after such dreams. Alcohol and antidepressants prompt such memorable dreams. Alcohol’s effects should subside by morning. This affects your brain chemicals and triggers bizarre dreams that stretch into your real life. People taking antidepressants experience more intense REM, due to which such people end up having more nightmares. If the medicines you are taking are interfering with your sleep and dreams, then you may ask your doctor to switch them.
  • Dreams that wake you up: some people are early birds who wake up even before the alarm goes off. But some people are woken by their dreams. If you are one of them, then you might take it as a warning sign of an underlying mood disorder such as depression or anxiety. Due to depression and anxiety, you enter into your dreaming state earlier in the night. As a result of this, you see your dreams early and end up waking up early too. Another possible reason for which you may wake up from a dream early can be acid reflux or heartburn. This can happen if you consumed a fatty meal the last night. Having a light meal in the night can assure pleasant dreams and good sleep.

Dreams which may indicate illness

There are some specific dreams occurrences in dreams which might have a common interpretation for many. These may include:

  • Being struck by lightning in the head: dreaming of being struck by lightning in the head might indicate migraine. The two types of pain are related and our subconscious switches one for the other.
  • Being surrounded by dead people: when you dream of being surrounded by dead people, or if you travel with dead people to a strange, unknown place, then this kind of dream suggests you are worried about illness or even death.
  • A dead person asks you for sweets: if a dead person takes something from you in your dream, it is said to indicate loss. This kind of dream means that the dead person wants to take the sweetness in your life. This may be your health, a close relative or something else you value. Is there something you are worried about losing?
  • Black snake bites you: if a black colored snake bites you or someone else in your dream, then it is said to reveal a serious illness. A black color snake might have a negative connotation, but it will depend on the individual and their circumstance. For example, some black metal fans might welcome the presence of black snakes in their dream.
  • Broken teeth: teeth falling out in a dream is often said to be related to having money troubles in your life. However, it can also be a sign that you have a physical ailment which needs addressing. This may be as simple as having toothache and are worried about something bad happening to your teeth.
  • A creature following you: if you find yourself being chased by a giant creature such as a rat, monkey or an insect, then some say this indicates the presence of a serious illness.
  • Ants all over your body: in your dream, if you see ants all over your body, then it might indicate illness and suffering. If the ants were stuck on a particular organ, then it is a sign of that organ’s issue. However, ants might equally intimate there is a psychological stress occurring in your life.
  • Saying goodbye: if someone says goodbye to you in your dream, if the person is carrying a suitcase, if their hair is grey or if the person is looking tired and weary, then it might be a sign you are worried about age related illness.
  • Being attacked: being attacked in your dream suggests a fear of losing control. If you have been having memory problems or have been having periods of confusion, it could suggest the presence of a neurological or neurodegenerative disorder.

Any dream interpretation is dependent on the individual and their circumstances. Just because you dream of being sick or of a particular illness does not mean that you are suffering from a problem yourself. You need to have a think about what is happening in your life to see how the dream might apply. Dreams are snippets of our subconscious feelings, but they are not always clear signs of a specific problem. If you think you may have an illness, please see your doctor and let them know why. If it is because of a dream, it may be helpful to discuss the status of your mental health.

If you want some more specific dream interpretations, you might want to take a look at our article on what does dreaming about blood mean.

If you want to read similar articles to What Does It Mean If You Dream About Someone Being Sick?, we recommend you visit our Culture & Society category.

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