Your eyes snap open. You’ve just had a very convincing dream about being pregnant — and you’re feeling a little unnerved.
That’s weird, you think. Clearly you’re not pregnant. Still, the dream was so vivid, so detailed, you can’t help but wonder: Could I be pregnant? Or will I be soon?
Spoiler alert: Pregnancy dreams are just that: dreams. But! There are still a ton of fun myths out there — and who doesn’t love a good dream interpretation every now and then?
Why do I sometimes dream about being pregnant?
Dreaming about being pregnant doesn’t mean you’re pregnant. A pregnancy test can tell you if you’re pregnant, with a high degree of accuracy. For example, all Clearblue® pregnancy tests are over 99% accurate from the day you expect your period.1
There’s a lot we don’t know about dreams.2 What we do know: Most dreaming occurs during a period of sleep called rapid eye movement (REM), a phase you typically cycle through several times a night.2 Your brainwaves are very active during REM — almost as active as when you’re awake!2
While we aren’t aware of any studies that point to the percentage of people who dream about pregnancy in general, dreaming about pregnancy when you know you’re pregnant does happen.3 According to a 2013 study in Frontiers in Psychology, 67-88% of pregnant women “report having at least one dream relating to a baby, pregnancy or childbirth.”3
What do pregnancy dreams mean when you’re not pregnant?
Honestly? There’s no scientific evidence linking any truth or meaning to dreaming about pregnancy when you’re not pregnant. In fact, according to a 2010 study in Trends in Cognitive Sciences, dreams may be more closely linked to imagination than to perception.4
OK, but still — can we talk about pregnancy dream interpretations for fun (please)?
Just to reiterate — there is zero scientific evidence to back up any of the following pregnancy dream interpretations. Still, talking with family members or friends, or doing a quick search online, will lead you to dozens of myths on what your particular pregnancy dream might mean. Here are some of the most prevalent myths we found:
- You’re experiencing something new and exciting in your life.
- You’re going through a life change that is causing anxiety.
- You’re experiencing personal growth.
- You’ve been feeling extra creative lately.
- Your subconscious is responding to your role as a caretaker in real life.
- You’re thinking about having a baby, you really want to have a baby or the thought of getting pregnant right now terrifies you.
- You might just need to pee in the middle of the night!
- If, in your dream, you’re in the late stages of pregnancy or are about to go into labor, you might be about to achieve a goal or a long-held dream, or you might be anticipating a reward after a long period of patience and hard work.
- If you’ve been stressed lately, those stressful feelings may overflow into your dream, where a surprise pregnancy would complicate your life even more.
- If, in your dream, you experience morning sickness, something in your life may be making you uneasy.
- If, in your dream, you’re pregnant with multiples, you may have a lot going on in your life.
- If you dream you’re pregnant with a nonhuman, something in your life may be confusing you.
What if I still can’t shake the feeling that I’m pregnant?
If you’ve dreamed about being pregnant and think there’s a chance you might actually be pregnant, reach out to your doctor and take a pregnancy test. Clearblue® Early Digital provides early detection of the pregnancy hormone (human Chorionic Gonadotropin, or hCG) and is over 99% accurate from the day you expect your period.1
- >99% accurate at detecting typical pregnancy hormone levels. Note that hormone levels vary. See insert.
- Cleveland Clinic. Why do we dream? Updated August 18, 2022. Accessed May 17, 2023. https://health.clevelandclinic.org/why-do-we-dream/
- Lara-Carrasco J, Simard V, Saint-Onge K, Lamoureux-Tremblay V, Nielsen T. Maternal representations in the dreams of pregnant women: a prospective comparative study. Front Psychol. 2013;4:551. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00551. Accessed May 27, 2023. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3753535/
- Nir Y, Tononi G. Dreaming and the brain: from phenomenology to neurophysiology. Trends Cogn Sci. 2010;14(2):88-100. doi: 10.1016/j.tics.2009.12.001. Accessed May 27, 2023. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2814941/