GA Anderson writes about mystical and psychological symbol interpretations and how to apply them to your dreams.
Did you ever dream that your teeth fell out? Maybe one came loose, or maybe they all started to crumble and fall?
Most people have. Dreaming about teeth falling out is one of the more common symbolic dreams, but finding out what it truly means and how it relates to you requires both a wide and a specific investigation of the context of the dream.
In other words, only the dreamer can determine the meaning of their dream. To find out a dream's meaning, it is important for the dreamer to consider whether any part of it portrays a recent life event or concern. The dream's personal context and details make all the difference to its meaning.
These general interpretations will help you do just that. Use these meanings and interpretations to find out what those teeth in your dream mean to you and your life.
Dream of Teeth Falling Out
Most people assume that a dream about teeth falling out is a negative one, but this is not necessarily the case. This dream could represent a lack of confidence (especially in one's appearance or physical health), feelings of powerlessness (toothlessness; impotence), or communication problems (due to dishonesty or a lack of eloquence), but it might also mean that you're growing, evolving, or being reborn in some sense.
To understand exactly what a dream means and if it has a positive or negative message, you'll need to consider its context, both in the dream and in the dreamer's life.
Consider the Dream's Context
- To determine what your dream means, consider all of your dream's context clues and recent events in your life. For example, do you have a new job or assignment, a new relationship or a shift in a current one, or has something recently changed?
- If your relationship partner is in your dream, then it may mean you are feeling self-conscious about your appearance or experiencing an inability to say what you need to say in the relationship.
- Or if you dream about losing your teeth at work, then it could mean you aren't confident you can do the job and are fearful that your co-workers will find out.
- On the other hand, if you had just quit your job and then dreamt of losing a tooth, it could simply represent a fear of change.
Teeth Falling Out in Dreams: What It Means
- Concerns About Physical Appearance: Teeth play an important part in one's appearance. If you've ever seen someone without any, you'll know what a difference teeth make to a person's entire face. A dream of losing teeth might reveal a worry about one's physical appearance, a fear of rejection for physical reasons, or of getting old.
- Powerlessness: If you have teeth, you can bite. The bigger the teeth, the more damage they inflict. Your teeth can represent your power, and if they are wiggling or crumbling you might be feeling helpless, defenseless, or weak. You may feel physically or emotionally challenged or just incapable of making a decision.
- Financial Concerns: Since money is often a facet of power, worries about money—of losing money or simply not having enough—might trigger a dream of teeth falling out.
- Loss of Sexuality: Teeth falling out could relate to feelings of failing potency, sexual prowess, desirability, or desire.
- Personal Growth or Evolution: The teeth falling out may be making room for new ones—new growth in your personal or professional life.
- Inferiority: Lost or broken teeth may signal feelings of self-doubt in your appearance or your abilities.
- Communication Problems: Your teeth might represent your ability to express yourself and say what you mean. If you find yourself biting your tongue, holding back the truth, telling lies, unable to voice what you want to say, or afraid of speaking up, these feelings might surface in a dream of losing teeth.
- Deceit: In some Eastern cultures, teeth falling out can represent lying or deception.
- Embarrassment: Publicly losing one's teeth in a dream might trigger—and be triggered by—feelings of shame or embarrassment.
- Health Issues: Fears of deterioration, physical decline, illness, or loss of health might manifest in dreams of rotting or decaying teeth. This might represent a concern for your own physical, emotional, or psychological well-being or for that of someone close to you.
- Deterioration or Death: Worries about aging, loss of health or mobility, weakness, or feelings of mortality might be indicated.
- Nutrition: This dream might indicate a lack of nutrition or poor diet, or point to a new desire to take better care of oneself.
- Rebirth: This dream could be a first step in a complete transformation or rebirth. Out with the old (teeth), in with the new.
- Dental Issues: Of course, sometimes dreams are quite literal. Perhaps you have put off going to the dentist for too long and subconsciously know that you have an issue with your teeth, or maybe you did recently go to the dentist and got some bad news.
Each of these interpretations is explained further below, in two sections: one for positive interpretations, and one for negative.
A man begins cutting his wisdom teeth the first time he bites off more than he can chew.
— Herb Caen
11 Negative Interpretations of Teeth Falling Out
1. Vanity or Self-Esteem Issues
Your self-image is a barometer of how you feel about your life. Your teeth are a big part of that self-image. To dream about them falling out might mean you lack confidence or that you feel that those others don't see you as you see yourself. Perhaps someone important to you doesn't see you as being as attractive, intelligent, or competent as you want them to. You feel that you—like the teeth in your dream—appear broken, unattractive, or weak.
It could also relate to your ability to do a task or cope in a social situation. You may be feeling you are going to fail and are feeling embarrassed that others are going to find out.
2. Feelings of Powerlessness and Impotence
As with most stress dreams, the symbolism of your teeth falling out relates directly to feelings of inadequacy or inability. This could be a subconscious message that some aspect of your life feels out of your control. You are powerless to stop or manage something in your life.
It could be work- or social-life-related, or it could stem from a personal relationship. You might be feeling that there is nothing you can do about what has, will, or is happening, that you have no power to affect the situation.
3. Financial Anxiety
A lack of money or a worry about financial affairs can materialize in dreams where losing teeth equals losing money. An ancient Greek named Artemidorus of Daldis wrote a dream interpretation manual called the oneirocritica (ὀνειροκριτικά). In it, he related losing teeth in a dream to the payment of debts. In this dream, you may feel powerless to control the physical manifestation of a financial crisis.
4. Loss of Sexual Attraction or Prowess
In a classic Freudian interpretation, teeth are related to potency, and losing them is similar to castration.
Your teeth and smile are representative of your virility, so a loss of teeth might be seen as a loss of sexual ability, attraction, or desire.
It could be a sign that you are not feeling capable of sexual arousal or capable of arousing your partner.
5. Feelings of Inferiority or Insecurity
Lost or broken teeth may signal feelings of self-doubt in your appearance or your abilities. Perhaps you've been feeling infantilized and ineffective, stripped of power, and like you don't measure up. Our teeth represent our power, so a dream like this might suggest you feel like you haven't fulfilled expectations or you've been overlooked or perceived as inferior in some way.
In a dream like this, the dreamer could be feeling that they aren't good enough, attractive enough, or capable enough to be well-judged by others.
As a stress dream, this symbol could be a subconscious message that something in your life's recent or upcoming events is affecting your feeling of not being good enough or capable enough to handle it.
Some old women and men grow bitter with age; the more their teeth drop out, the more biting they get.
— George D. Prentice
6. Communication Problems
Regarding communications, you could be feeling powerless to say what you want to say or express yourself in a way others will understand. It could also represent an inability to communicate at all, either due to a lack of opportunity or someone's unwillingness to hear you. It could even represent your fear to speak up at all about something that is important to you.
7. Deceit or Deception
In China it is thought that if you tell a lie, act deceptively, skirt the truth, or purposefully lead others astray, you will dream about losing your teeth. Especially if you are not a habitual liar, the stress of telling a lie might manifest in a dream in which your mouth—the source of the dishonesty—literally falls apart as a result. Or perhaps you have been lying to yourself, and this is your subconscious's way of drawing your attention to the hollowness of your words.
There is an old Chinese aphorism about lying that ties this dream symbol to deception and deceit: "The proof of the lie is your teeth falling out."
Another interpretation might be that you (or someone close to you) know you are lying and your teeth are falling out so that all can see the fact that you are lying. The dead teeth falling from your mouth are like lies spewing from your lips.
8. Embarrassment and Shame
A common element in dreams about teeth falling out is shame: the dreamer is abashed and embarrassed and tries to hide the sight of their crumbling teeth behind their hands. The loss of teeth is a spectacle, a shocking display of weakness, a literal loss of face, and the public display of vulnerability can be overwhelming. The broken teeth might represent shame and the dreamer's desire to hide their weakness.
9. Health Complications and Self-Care
Most people associate good teeth with health. Tooth deterioration is frequently seen as a sign of both poor health and old age.
Dreaming that your teeth are falling out could signify worries about your health or anxiety about growing older and what that means to your quality of life.
Try to recall the other details or circumstances of your dream. It is likely there were other symbols that would point to this interpretation.
10. Death or Decline
An interpretation that death is involved may sound overly dramatic, but it does logically follow the fear of health issues and old age.
If you are feeling serious concerns about your health or fear the prospect of aging, it is not a big leap to consider a dream of teeth falling out to be a symbol of a fear of death.
Once more, this is a dream meaning that is very dependent on the context and content of your dream.
11. Dental Issues or Phobias
Sometimes, a dream of teeth is just a dream of teeth. Perhaps you are literally worried about dental issues or of going to the dentist. Maybe you know you need to get that cavity filled, or maybe it's been a long time since you had your teeth cleaned, or maybe you're terrified you might need a root canal. If so, it makes perfect sense that you'd be dreaming of broken or rotting teeth.
3 Positive Interpretations of Losing Teeth in a Dream
There are seldom positive things in a stress dream, but experienced dream interpreters—going all the way back to Carl Jung—have noted several possible ones. They have determined some instances when, in conjunction with other aspects of the dream'd contents, do seem to point to positive messages from your inner self.
1. Growth and Development
This meaning has a bit of Freud in its interpretation. As losing your baby teeth marks a transition to the next stage in your life, so can a dream about your teeth falling out mark your journey to full adulthood.
This dream might be a message telling you that you are rising, or are ready to rise, to a new level in your life. It may signal a maturing of abilities and outlook. You are evolving, growing into a better person.
However, to see this symbol as a positive sign, there must be other positive parts of your dream that reinforce that meaning.
2. Nurturance and Support
Those falling teeth could represent a time of your life when you felt cared for and supported. The dream could be tied to feelings you had as a kid when you had no worries and your family and the world nurtured you as you grew.
As a dream symbol it could represent an inner feeling that those around you in your life now are offering you that same sense of nurturing support that you remember as a child.
3. Rebirth or Evolution
Teeth falling out could represent a feeling of rebirth in your life. This interpretation comes from a recognized master of dream interpretation, Carl Jung. Simply put, Jung saw the loss of those teeth as a message of something new in your life—a rebirth. You are ready to move past your old life into a new and more fulfilling one.
The Context and Imagery of Your Dream Matter
To understand which of these meanings might apply, you must consider what was surrounding your vision of teeth falling out, or the dream circumstances in which it happened. Looking at the whole picture of your dream will help you understand just what message your subconscious is trying to send you.
What Does My Dream About Bad Teeth Mean?
"What if I dream of false teeth?"
If you dream of having a mouth full of fake teeth, dentures, or a bridge, it might suggest that something you've said is similarly false, dishonest, made-up, or unreal. Since dentures usually happen in old age, this dream might also symbolize anxieties about lost youth or attractiveness.
"What if I dream of having crooked teeth?"
When things grow in crooked or twisted, it's oftentimes an indication of something wrong at the root. Something in your life might be out-of-line or twisted. Perhaps you, like your dream teeth, have not been growing straight or moving ahead in the right direction. It might also indicate a simple lack of control and a need for guidance or support.
"What if my dream teeth are rotting?"
A rotten tooth is visual proof of negligence and poor health: it needs to be removed or its decay and rot will contaminate others. This dream could indicate a need to get rid of something negative in your life or say goodbye to some old or unhealthy pattern.
"What if my dream teeth are chipped or broken?"
The things you once thought were solid and unbreakable have suddenly become delicate and vulnerable. This dream could indicate a recent psychological loss or a sudden and surprising depletion of health or capability.
"What if my teeth were loose or wiggly?"
Perhaps you've been feeling out of control like you're teetering on the edge or hanging by a thread. You might be overwhelmed with responsibilities you can't fulfill or decisions you can't make. It could be a time of transition and instability for you.
Every tooth in a man's head is more valuable than a diamond.
— Miguel de Cervantes
Only You Can Know the Real Meaning of Your Dream
Common dream symbols (like broken or missing teeth) are pieces to a puzzle, but the only way to see what they add up to is to look inside the dreamer. It is up to you to remember and rebuild the picture presented in your dream. As much as you can, try to answer these questions:
- What was the circumstance of your dream symbol, how did it appear?
- What else was in your dream?
- How did you feel and react to the dream symbol?
- Was the symbol the most prominent part of the dream, or did it share the stage with other symbols?
- Did anything in the dream portray or draw attention to a recent event that happened in your life?
- Most importantly, what was your first reaction to the symbol, what did you think it meant in your dream?
The answers to each of those questions will help you begin to understand which of the possible meanings apply to your dream.
If your dream is a reoccurring one, keep a notepad by your bed and jot down as much as you can remember as soon as you wake up.
If you would like to discuss or share your dream, feel free to use the comments section below.
To Learn More About Teeth Dreams...
The Meaning of Teeth Falling Out in a Dream: Seeing your teeth fall out is a common dream for many people. The dreamer typically sees their teeth crumble, fall out one by one, become loose, or fall into their hands.
The Meaning of Teeth in a Dream: Teeth in a dream typically symbolize verbalization or expression. They also symbolize the dreamer's sense of social confidence. Here's more information about what dreams about teeth mean.
What was your subconscious trying to tell you?
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Questions & Answers
Question: I had a dream that half of my top teeth fell off and I was carrying them with my hands. What could it mean?
Answer: This dream typically represents uncertainty. You are faced with or have made a decision that you are not sure of and that you are carrying your teeth in your hand symbolizes your hope that you can change your decision.
Question: I had a dream where every time I pushed against my teeth it made some of my teeth really loose. Loose enough where they could have fallen out but didn't. This type of dream has occurred twice but the thing about the teeth is that it is getting worse. In my recent dream if I got up those teeth would fall, it felt like. If it helps any all I remember is myself and my friend grey in my dream. Can you help me, please?
Answer: Pushing against your teeth is an indication of a test of your decision. Some aspect of your waking life has forced you to make a decision and you are not sure you made the right choice. While you are laying your teeth remain, but if you get up, (actually face the consequences of your decision), you feel your teeth may fall out.
Consider recent life events. What decision have you had to make? Are you doubtful of your choice of action? This is what you must decide. Have faith in your intuition.
Question: So I dreamt that my lower front teeth fell out. My gums felt so heavy and as they fell out, some came out broken into pieces. I then called my parents who were outside to come inside the room to see what had happened. I was crying then. So my mum asked why I didn't come outside to show it to her and my dad replied by saying if I wanted everyone to see or know, I would have come outside. But I was worried and I thought of going to see a dentist to fix it. What could it mean?
Answer: The details of your dream and how your teeth fell out could mean you have a serious concern, and lack of confidence about some recent life event. It could be some new relationship where you feel that you cannot live up to how you are perceived and your "weakness" will be seen by everybody or if it is a work-related event you are worried that your inability will be seen by everyone at work.
Examine your recent days. Look for a new event that you are not comfortable with. This is where your inner-self is sending you.
Question: What is the meaning if most of my teeth fall and I am with my husband?
Answer: Your dream is symbolizing a lack of confidence. That your teeth fall out when you are with him points to your inner worry that you may not be worthy, or that you have made a decision he won't approve of.
Question: I dreamt my cousin and I were riding in her car. I noticed her front teeth had fallen out. What does it mean?
Answer: That you dreamed your cousin's teeth were falling out, and not yours, could mean you lack confidence in your cousin's abilities. Driving may only be a symbol of some other life action you are worried your cousin can't handle or is handling wrong.
Question: I had a dream that I lost five teeth because I didn’t brush my teeth. What could it mean?
Answer: More context of your dream would be needed for an accurate interpretation, but on the surface, because you know they fell out because you didn't brush your teeth indicates you have some fear or concern that something in your waking life is going to go wrong because you didn't do something you know you should have done.
Look to the context and details of your dream for clues to what you are worried about.
© 2018 ga anderson
Teeth Falling Out Dream Comments
Tofunmi on September 03, 2020:
I had like my ten teeths falling of from my mouth, both from upper jaw and the lower jaw. I was scared because it disfigured me. And some too are still shaking about to remove in dream
Jinvi on July 13, 2020:
Dreaming of sucking my lower teeth by my jaw line what does it mean?
Sam on December 28, 2019:
I had a dream of one of my teeth falling and when I woke I had teeth in my hand then I handle it to my husband to look at
Growing up I was always told that this is bad luck and this meant death
Someone close to me was going to die
Is this a myth
Grace on December 06, 2019:
I had a dream I was with my boyfriend in my room and my molar tooth started loosing but I realised my incisor tooth had falling out and I showed to my boy friend that he should look but he said it will be replaced and I said no it can't at this age.
Noreena on November 07, 2019:
I was eating lunch with people but not sure with who and i felt a breaking/ crumbling feeling. I look over to a friend and ask if something is wrong and there is silence just a wierd look I look in the mirror to discover I actually lost two teeth, front tooth skip a tooth and then another one gone.
Maria milio on November 04, 2019:
I seen a toothless mouth ,not mine, up in the skies near my daughters home .this dream frightens me because when ive dreamed of a toothless mouth someone dies, can you help me with this dream
Shaena on July 22, 2019:
I had an accident in my past, a fall onto my face off a skateboard, in which my teeth actually did break into bits, then throughout the years, after root canals and caps, more teeth began to die and break off at the gum line, so literally this has happened in real life. I’ve lost my temporary partial and have broken it. It’s a constant fear and I still dream about it. It truly sucks.
Blessing linus on June 24, 2019:
I dream getting married to my fellow woman n at dat point we exchange blood