How the World Dreams
The most common type of dream in the world revealed
The average person spends around a third of their life sleeping, and dreaming can help preserve memories, aid emotional regulation and process difficult feelings.
Although there might be no meaning to the stories our minds create when our heads are on the pillows sleeping, research has shown that dreams can be a reflection of situations and people in our lives.
We wanted to find out the most common types of dreams around the world, and in the UK, therefore we looked at Google searches in every OECD country and UK city over the last year to find out how the world dreams.The most popular dream topic in the UK
1. Snakes - 169,760 Google searches
The most popular dream topic in the UK, and also in the world, is snakes. There were 169,760 Google searches in the last year about snake dreams and snake nightmares, across the UK.
2. Pregnancy - 69,220 Google searches
Pregnancy dreams are hardly uncommon, with 69,220 Google searches in the last year about dreams or nightmares of being pregnant or giving birth.
3. Cats - 66,900 Google searches
Cat dreams are one of the most common dream topics in the UK, and also one of the most popular animal dreams. There have been 66.900 Google searches in the last year for cat dreams and nightmares.
1. Snakes - Most searched dream topic in 47 cities
Dreams involving these primal, reptilian creatures are the most common throughout the UK, as the most searched dream query last year in 47 cities we looked at.
Snake dreams can represent rebirth, shedding skin and moving on or can symbolise a challenge or situation that could be frustrating you. If your snake dreams are recurring, this could indicate the snake is representative of a toxic person or situation in your life that you’re trying to escape from.
2. Being chased - Most searched dream topic in 9 cities
One of the most frightening dreams anyone can have involves being chased. While some people dream of being chased by an animal, others have nightmares of running from people or of unknown creatures chasing them.
Although dreams of being chased can be related to your daily life, often occurring after watching a horror movie or being chased by a dog, these dreams can also represent your feelings. Recurring dreams of being chased can indicate fear, close-mindedness or avoidance in your everyday life.
3. Dogs - Most searched dream topic in 7 cities
Seeing a dog in your dream isn’t uncommon, ranking as the most popular dream topic in 7 UK cities.
Dreams or nightmares about dogs can depend on the dog’s mood in your dream - happy dogs can represent recovery or nurturing from a loved one, while dreams about aggressive dogs can indicate communication issues.
4. Cats - Most searched dream topic in 1 city
Cats are one of the most commonly owned pets in the UK, and since dreams usually reflect our everyday lives it’s no surprise that cat dreams are one of the most common types in the nation.
Being scratched by a cat in your dream can indicate feelings of being threatened while interacting with a happy cat can represent fertility, love or landing back on your feet after a tough situation.
5. Pregnancy - Most searched dream topic in 1 city
Pregnancy dreams are the most common dream topic in Lichfield, and while their meaning might seem straightforward, they can often represent more things than just having a baby.
If you aren’t planning on having a baby, your pregnancy dreams could be an indicator of growth in your life, nurturing career opportunities, or they could symbolise starting again.
1. Snakes - 1,528,380 Google searches
The most dreamed about animal in the world last year, according to Google searches from all over the world, is snakes.
There were 1,528,380 Google searches for dreams and nightmares about snakes. These slithery, reptilian creatures are a common dream appearance, as the most-searched dream topic in the UK as well.
2. Dogs - 432,000 Google searches
Man’s best friend is one of the most common things to see in your dream according to the word's Google searches over the last 12 months.
There were 432,000 total searches for queries related to dreams about dogs, including nightmares about dogs, and seeing a dog in your dream.
3. Cats - 386,320 Google searches
The chances of seeing an animal in your dream are undeniable, as the top three most-searched dream topics in the world all follow this trend.
Cat dreams have 386,320 Google searches in the last 12 months from all over the world.
1. Snake - Most searched dream topic in 6 countries
Snake dreams are the most popular dream topic in the world, as the most Google-searched dream topic in six of the countries we looked at. In Canada, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States snake dreams are the most common.
Snake dreams can be positive or negative, with big snakes sometimes representing good fortune and aggressive snakes potentially representing toxic people.
2. Dog - Most searched dream topic in 4 countries
One of the most common animal dreams in the world, dog dreams come in second place. In Belgium, France, Luxembourg and Switzerland, dog dreams are the most common dream to have.
Dogs appearing in your dreams can represent an omen to reassess the people you trust. Pay attention to the dog’s attitude which can reveal more about what or who they represent.
3. Flying - Most searched dream topic in 4 countries
Dreams about flying are the most common dream subject in four of the countries we looked at. Those in Germany, Italy, Portugal and Spain dream about flying more than anything else, according to Google searches.
Dreams of flying can represent feelings of freedom or the desire to break free from a difficult situation. If you are flying with ease in your dream this could be symbolic of you regaining control.
4. Cat - Most searched dream topic in 3 countries
Cat dreams are the most popular dream topic in Austria, Greece and Turkey. Often a symbol of love, creativity or power, cat dreams can have also been linked to curiosity and independence.
5. Cheating - Most searched dream topic in 2 countries
Cheating dreams are one of the most common dreams in the world, as the most popular dream in Denmark and the Netherlands.
The other person involved in the cheating can be symbolic of something you desire in your own life, or might possess an attribute you admire.
1. Lucid dreams - most popular dream type in 65 cities
Looking at the seven main types of dream, including daydreams, recurring dreams, and vivid dreams, the most common type of dream across the UK is lucid dreaming.
A lucid dream is a type of dream where the dreamer becomes aware they are dreaming, during the dream. In a lucid dream, the dreamer can control the dream characters, story, or setting, however dream control isn’t essential for a dream to be considered lucid.
1. Lucid dreams - most popular dream type in 17 countries
Lucid dreams are the most popular type of dream experienced in 17 of the countries we looked at, according to Google searches over the last year.
2. Daydreams - most popular dream type in 3 countries
Daydreams are the most common dream type in three of the countries we looked at, according to Google searches. In France, Germany and Italy, more people search for daydreams more than any other dream type.
We wanted to find the most common type of dream around the world therefore we compiled a list of 28 of the most common dream topics and 7 of the most common dream types using lists from Healthline.
For each dream topic, we created 2-4 search terms - e.g. ‘Dreams about (topic)’, ‘nightmares about (topic)’ and ‘(topic) in my dream’ - and using Google keyword planner we were able to find the total number of Google searches in the last 12 months for each dream topic in every UK city from Wikipedia and every Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development country from OECD.
We also used Google keyword planner to find the total number of Google searches for each of the 7 dream types we looked at.