You know those dreams where you wake up with your heart pounding and you feel like you just ran a mile?  Perhaps you were being chased by some bank robbers or running away from a tornado.  These types of dreams are sometimes anxiety dreams and we have them for an important biological reason.

Why do we have Anxiety Dreams?

Our body uses anxiety dreams as a way to process the stimuli that we encounter throughout the day.  As we sleep our brain looks through all the sights and sounds and experiences we have had and decides which ones to save and which ones to trash (I know, that is a pretty simplistic explanation – so if you are a scientist please be easy on me).  In this process it filters through all those times we feel anxious throughout the day and help us to work through any unconscious fears that come up for us.  These anxiety dreams actually work as a natural stress-reducer on the level of meditation or exercise.  They allow our brains to find a way to see that we can survive even the most frightening of situations.

Common types of Anxiety Dreams

With a little tracking, you may be able to quickly identify the type of anxiety dream that is common to you – and their is likely one or several symbols that you will become familiar with as signs that you are dealing with excess anxiety in your life.  Sometimes the image of teeth falling out is used in this way, but this example can have a variety of symbolism and might not actually be just strictly an anxiety dream.

More common are dreams of anxiety producing situations you encounter throughout the day.  This can be whatever natural disasters or weather related problems are pertinent to your area or the area you grew up in as a child.  For me this comes in the form of tornado dreams.  When I wake up from a dream of outrunning or surviving a tornado I know that I was working through some anxiety while I slept.  For you this may show up as dreams of earthquakes or tsunamis.

Another common anxiety dream in our modern times are those born out of our current media culture.  Instead of dreams of outrunning lions or bears, we now dream of car chases or police shootouts.  Perhaps your favorite crime drama that you watch every week on tv plays out in your dream world.

What are type of anxiety dream do you regularly experience?  Does knowing that this is just your bodies way of processing your daily stress help you to understand these dreams and appreciate them?

* I offer free Dream Interpretations through my Dream Collectors page.  Feel free to submit your anxiety dream for some further insight*


  1. My scariest reoccuring dream is finding myself in a situation where there’s a gunsman. One of the most vivid dreams I had like this was that I was back in my grade school gym and gym class for that day was a shoot out with the class divided on each half of the floor. Since I’m always flight in the fight or flight scenario, my MO was to hide as best I could. Are you able to provide any insight as to what I might be trying to work though with these horrible gun dreams?

    My most recent anxiety inducing dreams are where I forget to feed my baby. The baby never cries and I realize I’ve only fed him once or twice all day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. School dreams are all about learning. In your dream you are in the gym which is where you learn to take care of your body. Perhaps their is some anxiety around how how to take care of your body which stems from those grade school years?

      Your baby dreams could also involve being overly concerned with the amount in which you eat. The baby can represent your actual unborn baby or it can also represent you yourself (or any projects you are currently working on). Along with any general new mom anxiety I’m guessing you may have some (at least unconscious) anxiety around what you feed yourself and what you are eating while pregnant.


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