The 7 Most Common Types of Dreams

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There are many different types of dreams. To classify them all in neat little categories would be impossible, especially because dreams vary so much from person to person.

However, the more and more we share our dreams with others, and the more we learn to interpret our dreams, the easier it is to recognize that there are several very common dreaming types out there.

types of dreams

Here are the 7 most common types of dreams:

Release Dreams: Dreams That Help Us Process and Sort All the Information We Gather Each Day

These are dreams that often help you to work out a problem or experience in your subconscious. These dreams are the most common, and are our way of sorting through and purging all of the information we collect throughout our waking moments.

Release dreams can be full of symbolism and are sometimes difficult to decode for some. They are typically not frightening – though they sure can leave you waking up feeling confused!

Message Dreams: Yes, Your Dream is Trying to Tell You Something

In message dreams, the universe is trying to tell you something very important. Many recurring dreams fall into the “message dreams” category.

Message dreams sometimes use symbolism making them difficult to recognize the message, or they may be very obvious as to what they mean.

In most message dreams, you will wake up with a sense of needing to know something from the dream experience. Messages can be of any nature – relating to your happiness, overcoming fears, your career, your relationships. Being in tune to these messages can help you throughout your life.

Precognitive Dreams: Dreams Which May Predict the Future or Current Events

Precognitive dreams are the type of dreams that predict something that will happen or is happening while you are sleeping.

An example of a precognitive dream I had was dreaming my friend’s daughter was born – sure enough I woke up to a text message announcing her arrival!

Precognitive dreams can be difficult to distinguish from message and release dreams, but they happen often to some people.

different types of dreams

Lucid Dreams: Complete Control and Awareness While Dreaming

Lucid dreams are when you as the dreamer have complete control of the dream. You are fully aware that you are dreaming, and you have total control of what happens during the dream.

Lucid dreaming takes some practice – but it can be a very beneficial way to help you understand yourself better as well as help manifest your true desires in life. Learning to lucid dream can also help those who often have nightmares.

These types of dreams are very different from most others, because you are fully conscious while dreaming. If you’ve ever had a dream of yourself dreaming or a dream when you could recognize it was a dream, you were lucid dreaming and likely didn’t even know it!

Visitation Dreams: Talking With the Deceased

Have you ever dreamed of a deceased person you knew in your dreams? It is possible that this is a visitation dream. In these dreams, it very much is indeed true communication with loved ones.

A visitation dream will feel very real and be quite vivid in your mind. Dreaming of deceased loved ones often give a message of reassurance or peace and love, though they will occasionally offer guidance or a warning to you.

See our post on visitation dreams and read through the thousands of comments that affirm that yes, visitation dreams very much are real – and how to tell the difference between release dreams and dreams in which someone is communicating with you.

Wish Dreams: Dreams of Things You Desire

These are dreams when you get something you wish and hope for. They usually leave you waking up full of excitement or happiness.

An example dream might be taking a much needed vacation, finding a new career, or meeting a partner. Wish dreams can be great at helping you manifest the things you want into your waking life.

Nightmares: The Bad Dreams

Everyone has had a nightmare at some point or another. Nightmares are the dreams that terrify you or leave you deeply saddened. Nightmares are usually message dreams with a very strong way of telling you the message.

Nightmares can also happen from past traumatic events, as your conscious mind tries to understand what has happened. Understanding the cause of nightmares, learning to interpret the messages of your dreams, and learning how to have lucid dreams can help you deal with nightmares from recurring.


It can be difficult to recognize the type of dream you are having, especially if you are just getting started in dream interpretation. It can be particularly hard determining the differences between release dreams, message dreams, and precognitive dreams.

Fortunately, the more experienced you become at dream interpretation, the easier it will be to tell the differences between what type of dream you are experiencing. All it takes is a little bit of practice!

Have you had some or all of these types of dreams? What dream types would you like to know more about? Share your thoughts or questions in the comments section below!

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