Why Can’t I Remember My Dreams?

Last Update on November 3, 2022 : Published on November 3, 2022

Do You Dream?

What did you dream about last night?

Don’t remember?

Has it ever happened to you that you wake up and know exactly what you dreamt about but couldn’t recall it later? I am sure most of you can’t remember most of your dreams. Have you ever wondered why that happens?

“Why Can’t I Remember my dreams” If this question stays in your mind rent-free, worry no more. Today, we are going to look at all the possible reasons why someone can’t remember their dreams.

Sometimes you do remember what you dreamt about upon waking up but many times you don’t know whether you even had a dream. Dreams tell a lot about our subconscious but what can one do if they are unable to remember them?

Let’s look at some reasons why dreams become so difficult to recall and what tricks to use to recollect your dreams easily…

Let’s Get started!

What Are Dreams & Why Do You Dream?


Dreams are a very fascinating yet important function of the brain. The entire process of dreaming encapsulates a series of thoughts, images, & sensations. The things that happen to you or around you during the day can also convert into dreams.

There is no one particular reason behind your dreams. Your dreams can be a representation of your subconscious, they can be recollections of memories you’ve suppressed, your fears, your achievements, etc.

In fact, many psychologists, especially Freudians, believe that dreams tell us a lot about a person’s conflicts and core beliefs. The information received from one’s dreams can be used in solving the intrapersonal issues that give rise to mental health illnesses.

Also Read: 10 Common Dreams And Their Meanings Explained By Psychology

“Why Can’t I Remember My Dreams?”


There are various reasons behind one not being able to recall dreams. What’s surprising is that some of the reasons are so general that you’ll stop and think how something so small can cause such a huge impact.

Anyway, let’s look at the reasons behind, “Why Can’t I Remember My Dreams?”

  1. Stress: stress is the leading cause of disturbed and troubled sleep. Stress has a direct impact on the quality as well as the quantity of sleep you get. If you are stressed, you’re going to have frequent awakenings while sleeping. Such disturbances during REM sleep can make it harder to recall dreams.
  2. Diet: your diet plays an important role in your awake hours as well as your sleep hours. If you don’t eat enough fruits, vegetables & fiber, it’s going to affect the quality of your sleep. Therefore, a poor diet causes poor sleep which can result in forgetting your dreams easily.
  3. Trauma: trauma is something that has a huge impact on your sleep and dreams. In most trauma cases insomnia or extremely disturbed sleep is common. Dream recollection becomes difficult here because your brain wants to protect you from painful memories represented in your dreams (nightmares).
  4. Substance use: according to research if you consume any kind of substance before going to bed, it’s going to reduce your chances of poor sleep and dream recall. Alcohol messed up with sleep hormones, limiting your restful sleep.
  5. Medical drugs: if you are on some kind of medication, you’re more likely to not be able to remember your dreams. Just like substance use, medicines can also disturb your REM sleep making it harder for you to recall your dreams.
  6. Sleep disorder: if you are suffering from a sleep disorder or related disorder, the chances of disturbed sleep are more. When your sleep is disturbed, it automatically affects your ability to remember your dreams.
  7. Painful alarm sounds: dream experts claim that when you have a peaceful transition from sleep to wakefulness, it makes it easier to remember dreams. But painfully loud and irritating alarm sounds make the transition stressful, making you forget your dreams.

How many of these reasons have been affecting your sleep?

How To Remember Your Dreams?

If you wish to recall your dreams, try to limit these reasons from affecting your sleep. However, there are a few things you can do to remember your dreams. Let’s have a look at them…

  • Make sure you have a good night’s sleep: pay attention to things that might be disturbing your sleep routine and get rid of them.
  • Sleep with an intention to dream: it works just like affirmations do. When you go to bed, give your brain and body the signal that you are ready to enter your dream world.
  • Lucid dreaming: lucid dreaming is a skill that needs to be achieved. In this, you need to learn to be completely aware of the fact that you are dreaming.
  • Wake up peacefully: if the transition from sleep to wakefulness is not smooth then dream recollection will be difficult. Therefore, try to have a peaceful waking-up routine.
  • Write the details you remember: sometimes you wake up in the middle of a dream and remember the bits of your dream. That time you write down some details about it so that in the morning it’s easier to connect the dots.

That’s All Folks!

I hope you found this blog about why you can’t remember your dreams interesting, helpful and informative. Do share this blog with your friends and family or with someone who always complains about not being able to remember their dreams.

Thanks for reading.

Take care and sleep well.

About The Author

Kirti Bhati
Kirti Bhati

I am an English literature (major) and psychology (minor) graduate from St. Bede’s College, Shimla. Postgraduate in Clinical psychology from IIS University, Jaipur. She has published a Research paper on Music therapy in the military population and Workplace stress in a national seminar conducted by Fortis hospital (gurugram) and international seminar conducted by St. Bede’s College, Shimla, Respectively. Authored a dissertation work on ‘effect of social media addiction on the mental and physical well-being in adolescents’ Currently working at calm sage as a writer.

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