What Does Sickness Mean In A Dream?

Having a dream about being ill, or someone you love being sick isn’t exactly up there with the best dreams in the world. But is it a premonition? Has your subconscious been picking up on signs that someone in your life is actually ill?

Or does it mean something else entirely?

Let’s take a look.

What Does It Mean To Dream Of Sickness?

When you dream of being ill, or the theme of sickness (see also article titled ‘What Does Your Dream Of Vomiting Mean? Dream Interpretation And Symbolism‘) heavily features in your dream, the universe has something important to tell you.

Just as being sick in waking life makes you feel rotten, and drained, and you have no inclination to go after anything you want, a dream of sickness denotes exhaustion.

It can denote struggles in waking life that have left you feeling tired beyond belief, or a complete nervous wreck, always looking for the next disaster to come barreling into your life.

But like all dream meanings, nothing is what it seems. Where a dream of physical illness should likewise point to illness in waking life, it actually reveals emotional turmoil, mental exhaustion, anxiety, and depression.

This is especially true if you wake up from a dream like this and feel vaguely sick for the rest of the day. Your brain is telling you that you need to take some time off where you can and take the opportunity to recover some of your energy, if nothing else. 

It suggests that you’ll feel significantly better if you can manage this. With some time out, you may even find a solution to a problem you’ve been struggling with for a good while. 

Sometimes that is the only thing you need to do. Step back and reassess. 

Dreaming of feeling sick can also point to unexpected and horrible changes in waking life which you’ll have to learn to adapt to. 

Sometimes they can reflect on how you feel you can’t deal with a troubling situation on your own, but you don’t know who is the best person to go to. 

Sometimes it’s worth just reaching out to several people you trust, and asking them for advice. You don’t even have to act on it if it doesn’t feel right.

It’s worth going to several people, as that way you can tell which path seems like the right one for you.

A dream like this can also denote how you’re looking for an easy fix for an issue, or how you’re filled with grief. There may be no easy answer to a situation you’re in, and this might frustrate you more than the problem did to begin with. 

Common Dreams Of Sickness And What They Mean

There are so many different scenarios when you dream of sickness that it’s worth looking at the different types of these dreams, as they all have different meanings. 

Consider who was sick, whether it was you, a stranger, a loved one, and what type of illness they had, and why they became sick. 

The location of the dream can also alter the meaning. Dreaming of being sick in a hospital has a wildly different interpretation than dreaming of being sick at home, for instance.

Let’s take a look at some common dreams of being sick and what they mean.

Dreaming Of Being Sick In Hospital

A dream where you’re ill in hospital is a warning, surprisingly enough. We all worry about getting sick from time to time, and a dream like this can feel very worrying. 

Usually, dreaming of a hospital implies that you have niggling health concerns, and you should get them checked.

 It’s not a sign that anything is definitely wrong, but the fear has made it into your dreams, so it’s affecting you quite badly. It’s always better to know. Best case scenario, you are worrying about nothing, but don’t you want to stop worrying anymore? 

It’s worth noting that hospitals in dreams are places of rest, where we are looked after with the best care possible. 

You long to be looked after, safe in the knowledge that any problems aren’t yours, and someone else will fix them. This denotes that you’re tired beyond measure, and you really, really need to take some time to rest.

Dreaming of a very large hospital represents shelter, self-assurance, and comfort. 

Your subconscious seeks to comfort you in a dream like this, and urges you to find a way to heal from all the stress you’ve been experiencing. 

Another thing to consider in a dream like this is the care you received in your dream hospital. 

If the staff only grudgingly helped you, or didn’t help you at all, this mirrors your mistrust of people, or how you still remember a time when no one came to your aid when you needed them the most.

Your dream urges you to find a way to trust people again. You may miss out on many great experiences if you don’t learn this, leaving you lonely.

If the care you received was the best, this is a very positive sign for the future. It implies that you’ll succeed at anything you put your mind to, suggesting that your self-confidence is about to get a big boost.

Alternatively, dreaming of being ill in a hospital signifies that someone close to you has an issue that you have the power to help or even solve. If you are able to, you should help  them.

Dreaming Of Long-Term Illness

A dream of chronic illness or cancer (see also article titled ‘Cancer In Dreams‘)  is a worrying experience, to say the least. You’ll be glad to know that this dream is not a prediction of future illness. 

Instead, dreaming of chronic sickness is actually drawing your attention to long-standing vicious cycles, negativity, and constantly putting yourself down.

This dream suggests that unless you do something about it, this will only continue to get worse, not better.

It also denotes how tired you are of your problems. You want things to be easy, but unfortunately, they are anything but that at the moment. 

This dream can also reflect how you’re considering giving up on a long-term project or goal. You’re tired of trying. A dream like this may urge you to try something completely different.

A Dream Of Terminal Illness

Dreaming of incurable illness is a horrible experience. Fortunately, it’s not a prediction. A dream where you have a terminal diagnosis actually implies that you feel you’re completely wasting your efforts and your time in something.

You feel lost, and your motivation has nose-dived. This dream also denotes your frustration at feeling helpless or how you aren’t making progress, but this can’t happen all the time.

Dreaming Of Dying From Sickness Meaning

This is a warning dream. A dream where you die from being sick suggests that you’re not using your time to your full advantage. Often, you don’t enjoy what you used to, and this dream urges you to find something new to focus on.

A dream where you die from an illness means that you should let go of the things that no longer serve you, and try to consider where a journey of healing may start. 

The good news is that a death (see also article about dreams of zombies) in a dream is symbolic of change, so your unlucky circumstances are likely to shift back to something more normal soon, where you’ll enjoy a period of tranquility and peace after all the trouble. 

What Does It Mean To Dream Of Vomiting?

Dreaming of throwing up implies that you need to ‘expel’ something or someone from your waking life. The thing or person is causing you a lot of stress or upset, and you need to release it. 

This might be bad habits, a toxic relationship, a job that’s causing you burnout, or something else entirely.

Whatever it might be, you’re in the middle of a tough situation, and using old or harmful habits to cope will not help you in the long run, though it might feel better in the short term. 

Spiritually speaking, throwing up in a dream is a good sign that you’re about to put something behind you.

Some believe that a dream of throwing up – especially if you dream of throwing up because you’ve eaten or drunk too much – reveals fears of being embarrassed or someone outdoing you in your job role.

To see yourself being sick from a third-person perspective implies that you are doing too much of something. Maybe you’re overworking yourself, or you’re spending too much time enjoying yourself and not enough time moving forward in life. 

Dreaming That Someone Else Is Ill

Seeing someone else being ill in your dream suggests that you should spend some time with this person. They may need your help, where you can see something crucial in a situation that they are blind to.

If you feel terrified while this person is sick in your dream, it reveals that you’re worried about how they might judge you for something in waking life. 

Maybe you know that they would not approve of a certain decision or lifestyle choice you’ve been making lately. 

If the ill person is a stranger, this relates to a sense of shame following your own actions or repressing part of yourself so much that you no longer feel it. Spiritually, this is making you ill.

Consider who was ill in your dream, as this can change the meaning. Dreaming of your child being ill reflects your hopes that they will have a long and happy life, and the fear that they might not.

Dreaming of your parents being ill indicates you’re worried about losing control over an area of your life.

A Dream Where Your Mother Is Ill

Dreaming of your mother falling sick suggests that your relationship with her is about to  change. Maybe you’re so used to her making sacrifices for you that now she wants something for herself, you’re having a hard time accepting that.

Or perhaps you feel that a choice she’s making is not the right one for her, regardless of her reasons for making that decision.

Remember that your mother is not just a role model for you. She also has to lead her own life.

If you dream of your mother being sick when she is dead (see also article titled ‘7 Meanings When You Dream Of Talking To Your Dead Mother‘) in waking life, this refers to your grief and sadness, and how you wish she was still here with you.

Dreaming Your Parents Are Ill

This dream’s meaning depends on which parent was sick in your dream. If you dream your mother is ill, this denotes your overwhelming anxiety in waking life. 

You’re looking for disaster, but there’s no real reason why you should expect it right now.

Dreaming of your father being ill suggests that you need to repay someone for something they’ve done for you. Make sure you don’t have any debts, whether that’s in terms of money or something more spiritual in nature. 

A dream where both of your parents are ill suggests uncertainty, a change in your life’s security, and huge changes in waking life which will take a long time to get used to. You will struggle to adapt, but these changes may be for the better. 

You’ll be able to draw a clear line under the before and after

Waking Up Crying After Dreaming Your Parent Was Sick

Dreaming of your parents being sick and then waking up crying is a horrible experience. It is a fairly mixed dream. 

It denotes your love for your parents and the strong connection you have, but it also reflects your worry that something terrible will happen to them, and they will no longer be around.

A dream like this usually occurs when you feel absolutely drained by stress and an endless list of things you need to complete. 

It can also happen when disaster has found you in waking life, and your subconscious is giving you an outlet for all the terrible feelings, just using another horrible scenario to do it.

Recurring dreams of this type suggest you are close to burnout, and you need to find some time to recover, otherwise these dreams will keep happening until you do.

A Dream Where Your Grandparents Are Sick And Dying

Dreaming of your grandparents getting ill and dying (see also article titled ‘4 Hidden Meanings Behind Dreams Of Your Husband Dying Revealed‘) implies that your life is about to change significantly. Only time will tell if this is a good thing or a bad thing, and you will have to be patient.

It will also affect your connection with your grandparents. Maybe you’ll disagree hugely with something they have decided, but you’ll see that their way is actually best for them.

If you dream of your grandparents falling ill when they have died in waking life, this reflects how much you miss them, and how your connection with them endures even past death. 

A Dream Where Someone Throws Up

Watching someone throw up in your dream implies that you’re not ready to reconcile yourself with a certain situation, or you refuse to accept something which is inevitable. 

This dream denotes your pain and stress when it would be easier to try and come to terms with it.

Consider also if you helped the person throwing up. If you came to their aid, this suggests that any good deeds you’ve done lately will soon be rewarded. 

If you ignored them or got away from them because you didn’t want to be in the firing line this suggests that you’re too tired to be able to help others right now. You need to find a way to recharge, in order to be able to be there when other people need you.

Dreaming Of Someone Being Completely Healthy When They Are Ill In Waking Life

A dream where you see someone really healthy when in reality they are quite poorly is an interesting one. 

It can mirror your hopes that this person will soon recover, but it can also denote your feelings of helplessness or lack of direction when it comes to trying to cheer them up and make things a little easier for them in waking life.

Dreams like this urge you to spend time with the person who is ill, and make happy memories with them. You’d be surprised at how a little humor or knowing that someone is there for you can make all the difference in the world.

Dreaming Of Mental Illnesses

This one depends on the mental illness you were dreaming of. If you have a mental illness in waking life, this dream simply reflects your experiences and struggle with your illness, and your journey to living with it.

Dreaming of suffering from depression denotes loneliness, and how you require the support of the people you love in waking life.

You may also dream of having a panic attack, where you need to separate the challenges you face in waking life into single, smaller problems, and deal with them one at a time.

A dream where you have schizophrenia means that you’re desperately worried about losing someone or something that has defined your life for so long, you wouldn’t know who you are without them.

Dreaming of being unable to think properly reveals the need to talk to the people you love the most. You’re worried about being judged, and this is spreading to other areas of your life. Consider spending time with the people who know you best, and love you for who you are.

The Freudian Interpretation Of Sickness Dreams

Sigmund Freud theorized that while illness and death are the worst things to happen to us, they are inevitable, and he saw them as the ‘goal’ of life. 

Similarly, in order to appreciate what we have, he believed that we should remember that one day, we won’t have anything that we take for granted now.

Dreaming of death is a very natural thing. After all, it is intrinsically tied to life. But it doesn’t mean that you will die soon, rather it reflects your anxieties about losing everything you are and have, and the uncertainty of what might come afterward. 

Subconsciously, we all know that we will die one day. But despite this fact, we believe that the days will keep coming for each of us, and we spend time like there’s not a limited amount of it. 

Dreaming of falling ill and then dying implies that you want to prove that something impossible can be true, and this may be in any area of your life.

Dreaming Of Your Parents Dying

Dreaming of your parents falling ill and dying (see also article titled ‘The Meaning And Interpretation Behind Dreams Of Parents Dying‘) suggests a great change in waking life, where you will experience less security in life than you would like. But this doesn’t have to be a bad thing. 

This change could be something fantastic, like a new way of life, but it will take some time for you to find your feet, and leave your old lifestyle behind you, allowing it to settle in the past. There will be some uncertainty at first, but this change will end up being for the best.

Alternatively, a dream of your parents dying represents a new stage in your relationship, where the current phase of your connection has to ‘die’ in order for the new one to begin. 

Dreaming That Your Father Has Died

Dreaming of your father getting ill and then dying suggests that you need to turn your attention to your spiritual path in life. 

Somewhere, you are struggling in waking life. You might feel trapped or restrained by your responsibilities and commitments, and you’re beginning to think that you can’t change your circumstances or your life as a whole. 

This dream urges you to change your approach, otherwise this downward spiral will get much worse, and it will be much harder to climb your way out. 

Some people believe that a dream like this can reflect unresolved issues you have with your father now, if he is alive in waking life. Your subconscious mind tells you to find a way past the problems you face in order to enjoy your relationship with him more.

If you dream of your father getting ill and dying when he has died in waking life, this dream reflects your sadness, and the hole he left behind. On a more positive note, it also shows you that your connection with him is still strong, even beyond death.

Alternatively, dreaming of your father when he has died can symbolize your own moral compass in waking life, and any issues you didn’t manage to resolve with him while he was alive.

It can represent how you’re holding onto the guilt of something you never said – or something you said and regret, but you have no way of taking it back now. 

You may also dream of your father simply because you miss him, or you wonder what he’d say to you about a situation in waking life. Maybe it’s time to consider what he would do, or what advice he would give you.

The Jungian Take On Death In Dreams

Carl Jung theorized that death is perhaps one of the most important facets of life, and to deny death is to live in an unrealistic world, and to deny your own instincts. 

Death is only the second act of life, the end goal to mark a new chapter. If you dream of death, this represents a new start in waking life, where nothing will be the same.

This could be positive or negative, but you won’t know for sure until you have some time to look back on it.

Final Thoughts

Dreams of sickness can be a traumatic experience, and there are several layers of meaning you need to consider. Think about your own experiences of being ill or your family being sick, and what’s currently going on in waking life.

It’s also worth considering how you felt during this dream, as your own emotions can give you a lot of clues to the general meaning behind your dream. 

You can then look at the specific details of your experience and apply them for a greater insight into what your subconscious mind is telling you. 

For this reason, it’s worth looking at getting a dream journal, or keeping notes on your phone. This will allow you to come back to your dream at a later date without forgetting any of the details, and sometimes, the meaning of a dream can become clearer the longer you leave it.

Leave a Comment