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Ever Dream That Your Teeth Are Falling Out? Here Are the Most Common Meanings, According to Dream Experts

Photo: Getty Images / iz ustun
In a sense, dreaming is basically your brain putting on its own theatrical production. There are characters, sets, plots, and scenes. And just as there are a lot of similar movie arcs that exist, there are also a few pretty common dreams folks have. According to a recent analysis of most Googled dreams worldwide, Americans most commonly search for the meaning behind one's teeth falling out (roughly 81,000 times per month, in fact).

What do such dreams mean? According to Lauri Loewenberg, dream analyst and author of Dream on It: Unlock Your Dreams, Change Your Life, because of the location of one’s pearly whites inside the mouth, the main theme of teeth-related dreams tends to be rooted in communication: “Any dream that focuses on the mouth area—the lips, the teeth, the tongue, the throat—will usually be about the way you're talking to yourself or about the way you've been communicating lately in real life,” she says.

How to figure out what a dream about teeth falling out means for you

Before taking a deep dive into the potential significance of any dream, it's important to consider the context. According to astrologer and dream interpreter Stephanie Gailing, author of The Complete Book of Dreams, two people could have the same dream and have different responses. “You might have been laughing, and I might have been in horror,” she says.

“Any dream that focuses on the mouth area will usually be about the way you're talking to yourself or about the way you've been communicating lately in real life.” —Lauri Loewenberg, dream analyst

Of course, you want to be aware of what actually happens in the dream (for instance, are you pulling your teeth right out or are you making a beeline to the closest subconscious dentist?). But Loewenberg says you should also be attuned to how you feel about the dream once you wake up. “Dreams are pretty much our built-in GPS, guiding us and navigating us through life," she says. "Dreams are messages from you, to you, about you—in order to improve you.”

Wit that in mind, keep reading for three possible meanings of a dream where your teeth are falling out and four common types of dreams where this happens.

3 possible meanings of a dream where your teeth are falling out

1. Rebirth and transformation

When kids lose a tooth, they’re making room for another, hopefully stronger, tooth to grow. Having a dream where your teeth are falling out, then, might signal that you’re releasing the old to welcome the new, says Gailing.

2. Loss of control

If you can use your teeth to chew, you have pretty much full autonomy over when you loosen and tighten their grip. That’s why Gailing says that having a dream where your teeth fall out might indicate that you feel like you’re losing a grip in your waking life.

3. Concern about public image

“You can imagine a dream where you're about to go on a date or going for an interview and your teeth are falling out,” says Gailing. Here, it’s likely that you’re concerned about how your date or interviewer will see you if you have missing teeth. “Maybe that's also indicating that you are concerned about how you’re portraying yourself or your looks,” Gailing adds.

Loewenberg adds teeth falling out dreams might reflect having said something without thinking first in real life, which might reflect concerns of your public image, as well.

4 common versions of the teeth falling out dream

1. You want take back something you said

Wishing you hadn't said something in real life might take the dream form of you trying to jam your teeth back into your mouth. “A common thought process is ‘Oh, my God—I'm going to look like hell without my teeth,’ which is connected to the waking-life concern of how you may look now that you've said something [unideal],” says Loewenberg. Even if you’re not exactly concerned about how you’ll look physically, you have concern about how others will perceive you, now that you’re missing teeth.

2. You're gossiping

If a lot of your teeth are falling out, and in that dream you get the sense that this shouldn’t be happening, the meaning might be that you talk about others more than you should. In this case, says Loewenberg, your subconscious is “reprimanding you” and asking why you let certain information out of your mouth. The more teeth that are falling out, the more you’ve said that you should’ve kept to yourself, she adds.

3. You want to "fix" a situation

In some teeth dreams, the dreamer is concerned about how they’ll look to others. If you’re having thoughts about how you can fix your smile, though, the meaning of a dream where your teeth are falling out could be completely different.

“The thought process that goes along with the dream also plays a role in the meaning,” says Loewenberg. “If you're thinking, ‘How am I going to get my teeth fixed?,’ that could be connected to your real-life concern about how you can fix this situation that you messed up by saying too much.”

4. You struggle to keep your thoughts to yourself

In this dream, your teeth are loose and you’re trying all you can to hold them in place. They haven’t exactly fallen out yet, but they’re dangerously close to doing so.

If you're trying to keep your teeth in, and your dream thought process is along the lines of, Maybe if I press my tongue against my teeth hard enough, they'll go back in and stay, the dream might indicate that you feel a given issue will go away if you “keep your mouth shut long enough,” says Loewenberg.

Since your teeth are still in, it might also mean that there’s something you really want to say but haven’t yet; something that you know you shouldn’t say; or that you’re trying to figure out the best way to say something.

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