What do drug dreams mean?


By David Joel Miller.

Drug dreams and nightmares in people with co-occurring issues.

An increase in dreams is a common occurrence among people in early substance abuse recovery. Some of these dreams become especially vivid and troubling. Many drugs suppress dreaming and the brain seems to need to make up for those lost dreams. Some of these dreams are memories being consolidated or current issues. Other previously suppressed dreams may be unfinished business, especially traumas that had not been processed while the client was using or drinking.

I remind clients that being unconscious is not the same thing as sleeping. The heavy use of drugs and alcohol has not allowed normal dreaming to take place.

Often there is an increase in nightmares as the person gets more time off the drugs or alcohol. As we discussed in a previous post (Getting rid of nightmares that maintain depression and PTSD) those dreams that are interpreted as nightmares play a role at maintaining depression, anxiety and PTSD. This is an extra problem for those who have used alcohol to avoid the disturbing nightmares and now experience nightmares as a trigger for relapse.

One commonly reported dream by people in recovery is the dream about using their drug of choice. The conventional wisdom is that as the person withdraws from the drug, the brain adjusts to a new balance without the presence of drugs and at this point dreams about the drug are common.

Clients who awake from a dream and are genuinely scared that they may have used, may experience a panicked reaction. They need reassurance that dreams of drug use which result in a fear of use are a common and expected occurrence in recovery.

Some drug use dreams are so realistic that the client has the sense of tasting the drug in their mouth or feeling the familiar body changes. This sensation can be especially disturbing and may be a relapse trigger.

Positive drug use dreams can be dangerous. Franey and Christo, researchers from London, report that of clients with six weeks or more clean, 85% had drug use dreams. The average number of dreams was between two and three per month. The more drug use dreams the more the risk of relapse.

Frequent positive dreams may be a warning that the addictive part of your brain is craving drugs.

If you have drug use dreams it is important to talk with someone whom you trust as soon as possible after awakening from the dream.

Use of alcohol or sleeping pills is generally not recommended in people with substance abuse issues. The risk of abuse is great and the benefits generally small. If you feel you need some sleeping aids talk with your doctor or psychiatrists about the risks and benefits before starting to take anything.  Make sure you remind your doctor of any substance abuse issues or mental health diagnosis before beginning a treatment program that includes sleep aids.

You might want to take a look at other posts on:

Sleep

Dreams and Nightmares 

Have you experienced drug use dreams? Feel free to leave a comment about your experiences with drug or alcohol use dreams.

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For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse and Co-occurring disorders see the about the author page. For information about my other writing work beyond this blog check out my Google+ page or the Facebook author’s page, up under David Joel Miller. Posts to the “books, trainings and classes” category will tell you about those activities. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books

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96 thoughts on “What do drug dreams mean?

  1. Pingback: Drug dreams | David Miller, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

  2. I’m almost at 3 years heroin free (May 2nd) and I still have these dreams on almost a nightly basis. It’s just something I have come to terms with and, though frustrating, I know they will go away in time. You just have to stay strong until then and realize they are just dreams.

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  3. so ive been clean on and off for a while im presribed suboxone and colnopin. recently in my relationship my girl friend has made it very clear that i stay clean or she will no longer continue our relationship, and my parents are fed up so the pressure is on! ive been clean for a few months and the past 3 nights in a row ive been dreaming of me using my drug of choice blues and being busted and chased after. the dreams are really getting to me and i wokeup this morning upset as if ive done something wrong, but then a few hours passand ive been having awful cravings.

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    • Sounds like you are doing what is called “white knuckling it.” Consider reaching out for some help. A 12 step group like NA would be a good place to start. You may also need to do some sort of program. Especially if you want to get off the proscribed meds. Do NOT just stop taking your meds with out discussing this with your doctor. There are likely outpatient professional programs or counselors in your area that specialize in substance abuse or co-occurring disorders.I think it is a good thing that when you have the dream it gets to you. The hard part is to ride this out without picking up. Best wishes to you on getting clean and sober and having a happy life.

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  4. So this is probably going to sound lame but I found this site because two nights ago I had avery vivivid dream that a very close friend offered me heroin via a needle? (I question this because I don’t even know if u can use heroin with a needle??) In this dream I took the heroin and may have twice though at some point in the dream I did say I don’t want this and I didn’t want to Get addicted. When I woke up I was very panicked and scared I actually used heroin. Okay heres the part that sets this apart from relapsing and so on…I’ve never used drugs. Yes I just at admitted that as a 26 year old I’ve never done drugs and ill go one step farther to say I’ve never actually seen pot let alone heroin. I do socially drink alcohol on occasion and I smoke cigarettes but no drugs. Wat could this mean in my situation because as I’ve said it was very vivid and I was very panicked.

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    • Thanks for the comment Elizabeth. Since I do not know you and have not done an assessment or treatment I cant be sure why this happened to you. Even then interpreting dreams is taking a back seat to talking about what is going on in your awake life these days. Here are some general thoughts. Injecting Heroin is the most common way to do it. It can be smoked or snorted or swallowed but so much gets lost in the process and people who use it can develop a very expensive habit so they quickly progress to injecting. Even if you have never been around drugs it is likely you have heard about it somewhere or seen it in a movie or on T. V. Sometimes we remember things even when we are not aware we ever saw or heard about them.Heron is closely related to prescription painkillers like Vicodin, Codeine etc. So people who have had a prescription pain med can develop a craving for an opiate. I am just speculating here. If you drink alcohol or have used over the counter pain meds then you have done “drugs” whether you realize it or not. If you have ever taken three pain pills when the bottle said take two, you have abused drugs. Beyond that it is a matter of degree.
      One other thing to consider – is there something in your gut that is telling you to be careful of this friend that they may want to get you to do something that is not good for you? Dreams are not always literal and they do not always make sense but they can tell us about issues you mind is working on that are emotional and below the level of your awareness. If this keeps happening or is distressing you may need to talk it over with a professional.

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      • I have, of course taken over the counter medicine, but I have never gotten high off an illegal substance, but lastnight I had a dream that I shot up heroin… again, I’ve never even smoked weed… what could have caused this dream?

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      • You need to think about and work about what this means for you. One possibility is that there is something painful in your life and your brain is looking for ways to help you. There are, of course, many other possible meanings. Let us know if you come up with any ideas.

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  5. i will e six months clean this week and i still have these extremely vivid drug dreams i feel alomost too frequently. for instance last night i dreamt i smoked weed with black tar heroin on it. this is something i’d never done but used both drugs before. immediately was aware of what i did and tried to find my phone to contact my sponsor but i had the wrong phone with out his number. i also remember being aware that i was gonna fail my drug test at my halfway house and repercussions of what this was gonna do setting back my life. my drug of choice was drugs in general. i couldnt say no. these dreams are scary and feel so real that i do wake up in panick. i assume its natural but then i second guess if its my mind telling me something. my urges to use have fallen drastically and i see no signs of relapse. i guess im just wondering why these still exist so frequently. pretty much on a nightly basis there is some sort of substance involves in my dream

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    • Thanks for that comment Sammy. You are giving a good example of the kind of drug dreams that many people have in early recovery. I know for you 6 months clean seems like a long time but in terms of staying sober for life you have only just begun. This illustrates the way we say that after a period of drug or alcohol use your brain goes over to the other side. The default setting in your brain is to think about using drugs. You have to retrain your brain to think of other things. Not by avoiding thoughts of drugs but by adding positive “I can do this” thoughts. Eventually the “I can do this without the drugs” gets to be a more common thought than the “I want drug’s” thoughts your brain is having. The good part is that these dreams upset you. That gives me hope that you can make it and stay clean. Remember you are in a halfway or sober house. A large part of your life still resolves around drugs and not using them. These repeated reminders can be triggers for the thoughts of using. You can’t run from those triggers. You need to build up the ability to see reminders of it, talk about it or be reminded of it and still not have the desire to use. I would start by talking this through with your sponsor and oh yes, get the sponsors number on any and all your phones and on paper by your bed. Call that sponsor each day so you can just hit redial not have to go looking for a number. Best wishes on your continued recovery.

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  6. I have been off street drugs (heroin, crack) for 1 year and off Subutex for 6 weeks and have had a few of these drug dreams that have made me extremely angry and scared when I wake up. They always involve my brother who is still and addict trying to get me back on drugs and in the dreams I reluctantly cave in. I never see him anymore and it really frustrates me as I feel a deep sense of guilt after the dream even though I know I wont use again as they don’t interest me at all as they only bought me misery and I have too much to lose. It seems I have these dreams after I have a really good day as if my mind is telling me don’t get too carried away its only early days but I do know I won’t use again. Is there any medative techniques or cognitive behaviour therapy to stop these dreams?, they just make me angry that my subconcious mind is a weak bitch and I wake up pissed off for about an hour!. I understand they are telling me to stay away from my brother who was waving crack and heroin infront of me on christmas day at my mothers house but I got a massive sense of empowerment by telling him “fuck off ” on that day and I thought I was strong, why is my unconcious mind not as strong then!?. Thank you

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    • You unconscious, I as I see it will continue to work on this conflict. Getting past the dreams takes time. One way to work on this is to develop ways to ground or center yourself when you wake up. Remind yourself that you are in recovery now and can get through this with out using. Talk this through with a person you trust, a counselor, friend or sponsor. Best wishes and keep moving towards recovery.

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      • Thank you for you reply I will talk to someone. I understand what you mean about staying grounded. Thank you.

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  7. I been clean for about over 3 years. I moved to a different state and associate with drug free people. I been having dreams about the choice of drug use (crystal meth) that I used to do. And in my dream I’m either smoking it or trying to hide it. Sometimes I see my mom or sister doing it when they have never in their life done any type of drugs. Then I feel scare, betrayed, and try everything for them not to do it. I see myself sometimes physically abusing my daughter in mydream after using the drug. Then I wake up with my heart beating so fast. What does this kind if dreams mean??

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    • Dreams can have very personal meanings and it may pay for you to talk this through with a therapist in your area. From this brief description my thought is that you are feeling both scared and want them to not do what you have done. You also see things that you could do if you were still on the drug. My guess is that your brain is working through all the possible consequences of a possible return to use and trying to protect you from a relapse. This may mean you need to work on repairing the wreckage your drug use has had on your family and their relationship. Keep working on staying clean and sober and on building a positive support system. Recovery, especially from Meth takes a lot of time. Best wishes and thanks for reading and commenting.

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  8. Pingback: 5 Possible Meanings of Your Drug Dreams — Palm Partners Blog

  9. Hi, I am really suprised to see the number of people going through this also! i thought it was only me… i am over 2 years clean from heavy I.V use, of many sorts of drugs, and lately i have been having the dreams again… for a while after i first got clean i would have the dreams alot.. almost nightly. and they seemed to stop happening.. well they came back, they had never quite fully went away.. but they have been coming back more frequently. i think last month i had 3-5 dreams about it..

    I know it will not cause me to relapse but its just troubling to me…

    Is there any advice you can give me on this? i know it takes time, will they haunt me like this for the rest of my life? I have never slept good at night, usually have weird messed up dreams or ”nightmares” but i would take those dreams over shooting up bathsalts or smoking crack anyday…

    thank you in advance!!

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    • Generally these dreams fade away as time goes on. I am not surprised when drug dreams continue for about 5 years. that seems to be the length of time it takes many peoples brains to heal. Poor sleep can create or add to emotional problems, so do all you can to get a good nights sleep. Writing down the dreams the second you wake up and then talking them over with a counselor, therapist or sponsor can also help. Best wishes on your continued clean and sober life.

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  10. I have accomplished 1 year 6 months clean. in the beginning of my recovery i was having these dreams almost nightly. Now they have slowed down to almost monthly one thing i can say is the these dreams are different than other dreams they seem so real to me that in the morning it almost feels like i have gotten no sleep at all. They are extremely draining i absolutely wake up feeling scared, tired and exhausted from all the energy that i spend with in my dream. Last night i had a dream that i had relapsed on one of my past addiction to rock cocaine, when i was using i basically worked up the latter of drugs in my case it was marijuana, cocaine, rock cocaine, and ultimately looking for a bigger and longer lasting high my road ended at methamphetamine. Once i was hooked on meth, i only used marijuana to deal with the come down of meth so not really using marijuana as a daily dose. Rock cocaine i can honestly say was my worst addiction i have ever had to anything in this world i was able to recover from that 3 year long addiction 4 years ago. For some reason i told my self if i was not using rock cocaine any more i did not have a problem and i would be able to smoke marijuana, take exctasy at parties, and do a lil powder cocaine every once in a while since the high only lasted a few hours. Boy was i wrong when i could not find cocaine and wanted to stay up all night at these parties i ended up dropping exctasy and snorting meth that was the perfect party drug cocktail i could ever put together. On Christmas Day 2012 i finally got it together and realized that my addiction to drugs will always be extreme and looking for the higher, faster and longer type of drugs. I said to myself i need to stop because to be honest i will never be satisfied and be content with the drugs i’m using since my track record clearly shows that i looking for something more. These dreams only seem to remind me of the trap i was in while using i have never felt so FREE in my life since the age of 14 the day i started using my first drug. Just wish they did not drain me so much hope they stop soon i’m so over using drugs period…… thanks for listening =)

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  11. I have over 20 years living clean and sober. I’m currently experiencing disturbing, recurring dreams where I use! I wake up feeling very deflated and upset. For my situation, the dreams are likely a reminder for me to become more active in my recovery, and not take it for granted.

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    • That sounds like a reasonable interpretation of your dream. Recovery of any kind should not be taken for granted. What ever got you clean, sober or restored to sanity is something you need to keep doing in one way or another for the rest of your life. Thanks for reading and for leaving the comment.

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  12. My boyfriend and I have been clean off of meth for a few months now and neither one of us have wanted to go back to it. We moved far away from everyone we used to know and he works 7 days a week. I’ve been having dreams of him relapsing and me getting really mad at him. Why is that?

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  13. I have a sister who is using drugs. I had a dream she was using crystal meth. I have never known her to use crystal meth. She was so high and out of it. It scared me and made me sad to see her like that. Could someone help me to understand this dream, and what if anything I need to do. Also I myself have never used crystal meth, just marijuana when I was like 12. Im 30 now and that is so behind me. Thank you.. And congratulations to all the recovering addicts.

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    • Thanks for the comment. Dreams can mean different things to different people. You may want to take a look at the recent post on interpreting dreams https://counselorssoapbox.com/2014/11/17/what-does-my-dream-mean/ Think about recent interactions with your sister. any chance she was high and your dream was warning you? Meth has been in the news a lot recently, the fear a relative could start using is a reasonable one. My suggestion is to think about this and then maybe have a talk with yourselster and let her know you care.Best wishes. David Joel Miller

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  14. Pingback: What does my dream mean? | counselorssoapbox

  15. I have been clean for seven years off my drug Meth and here in the last two weeks i have dreamed about old ppl in my past. I never use the drug i just hold it in my hand and say no i dont want it i wake up and cant go back too sleep. I do not want to use when I am awake i feel no desire .So i don’t know why this is happening ..

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    • Not sure anyone can tell you what that means. Hope you saw my other post on interpreting dreams. All anyone can do is offer you a “possible meaning” and you need to see if it fits for you. When these sorts of things happen I look for possible “triggers,”sights sounds or anniversaries that may have reminded you of things you haven’t thought about in a while. Sometimes it can be as simple as seeing a seen in a movie other times it is more complicated than that. Hope all is well with you. Best wishes.David.

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  16. I have been sober and clean from coke heroin pot and many other street drugs for three years. I have been off my prescribed methadone for a year and a half now due to a six month trip to jail so I had stopped cold turkey. I have these dreams that are so real I think I actually did use and get nervous on my drug tests like I actually did use. When people look at me sometimes I have the habit of thinking they think I’m high. I cover my arms sometimes like I’m trying to hide track marks that aren’t there. I was a heavy user of almost everything for 16 or 17 years but heroin is what brought me to my low. Maybe I need to start going back to aa it wasn’t the same when I got home from jail though I felt like I was being judged and looked at like I was going to fail

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    • Those memories, dreams included, can go on for a long time. Drugs and even behavioral addictions change the brain. Having a good support system can really help. This is why so many recovering people attend A.A. or N.A. Don’t pick up and keep working on your recovery.Best wishes.

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  17. I’ve been clean for 13 days and I just woke up from a drug dream and found this website. My d.o.c. was crack, this is my millionth time trying to get clean (i was clean for 5 years before and never had a drug dream); however the difference is that yesterday when talking with my sponser, I told her I had no desire to drink or drug at all and I was bored out of my mind. We talked for an hour and I fell asleep around 8 pm. In the dream I do not recall how I copped the crack only that I put it in one of those single roses you find in the stores wrapped in plastic. It all slid down the side of the rose stem (wow, stem)…..anyway, I jumped in this girls van with my cat and she had a water bowl and I asked her if she had a dog in the van, she said yes, but I never saw it and I told her to DRIVE! DRIVE! DRIVE! it was the old behavior coming out. Next thing I know I ‘m in what I guess would be my apartment with 3 other people telling them let me go first and I would give them each one then they had to leave. I lost it all in my purse, it fell out of the plastic but there was a little left so being impatient I used the plastic which turned into glass and hit it. I saw the smoke go into my mouth, didn’t taste it though and no smoke came out, nor did I get the bell ringer I was looking for. I remember going through my purse and telling them all I lost it and I was pulling out empty baggies. I threw them all out and then my friends mother comes out of another room and starts doing sit ups right in front of me. One of the people came back and walked right in. I jacked him up against the wall and screamed at him never to walk into my place again without knocking, then I woke myself up. I don’t know what it all means but it was crazy. When I woke up it dawned on me what just happened and I started to cry and pray. I’m ok now and still don’t feel like using, no desire. I am not mandated by any court to be clean for the first time in my life and I believe God is doing for me what I could not do for myself and there before the Grace of God go I…..believe!

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  18. I have over 3 years clean from heroin n I’m in the same boat as Ashleigh. I myself have drug dreams almost every night as we’ll. some are real as ever but I’ve learned to deal with them and come to acceptance.

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  19. Pingback: Most read mental health blog posts 2015. | counselorssoapbox

  20. Ugh. I’ve been having dreams of old stuff I used to do with old acquaintances and it’s so vivid. I’ve been off oxy for 3 years and on suboxone. When I first got arrested and had to go to jail I had dreams in jail when I was withdrawaling that I was hanging out with a bunch of people I did drugs with and when I went to give this girl a handshake my hand went through hers and I fell off my bed and woke up panicing . Now all of a sudden I’ve been dreaming about using for two days straight. And it makes me want to get high so bad. My best friend just died from overdose a month ago. And that is really hard on me cause he wasn’t just some junky . He was an experimenter. What does this mean?

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    • Since I do not know much about you, only what it says in your comment, I can’t be sure what this may mean for you. Try this and see if it fits. You are under stress, recent death of a frid possible other things. Under stress the brain may revert to old ways of thinking. You had a reason you used before and similar reasons are bound to crop up from time to time. Sounds like you need to work on your recovery. Find ways to cope with the stress and develop a support system that does not include picking up again.

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  21. I am an ex junkie ive been clean for about a year. Last night I had a dream I was given three bags of dope all of my friends from high school shot up and I didnt do it yet i was debating to myself if i wanted it. They all nodded out. I then looked for a needle there wasnt any. Somehow i was home and my mom knew i had but never found it then i went to my room locked the door and split the dope up keeping a bag in my pocket and the other two in my closet i was just about to snort it when i woke up

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    • Thanks for sharing that dream. The brain remembers the addiction long after you stop. Years from now you may still have some of these dreams. The good thing is that the longer you are clean and sober the better life can get.

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  22. I have fifteen years clean and haven’t had a drug dream in years…until last night. I woke up this morning unsure if my clean date had changed. It sucked because I hit the pipe in my dream, but my high got screwed up. I was left feeling pissed off & like I needed to try again.

    I know this is an opportunity for me to revisit my program to see where I might be lacking. I appreciate that my higher power sends me “messages” when I am asleep. It is up to me to recognize the message, express gratitude that it was just a dream, and take the necessary action to uncover where I am deficient in my spiritual path.

    Just for today, I will share my experience with others so that I can be held accountable to myself. The disease of addiction grows in the dark & dies in the light of day. No matter how much clean time I have, I hope to always remain humble enough to realize I can’t do it alone.

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  23. I have been clean for a year and a half I was an alcoholic, a chain smoker both cigarettes and marijuana and a codeine addict. I have dreams of doing the above drugs and drinking on a daily basis im scared I will relapse. How can I stop these vivid dreams I have cravings during waking hours and will power keeps me focused and strong. Please help

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    • Eventually that will power will give out. You can run hard and fast for a mile, ten miles maybe a marathon but after fifty or a hundred miles you will fall down. Will power gets you started but you need more. For most people who become addicted the drugs are not the problem, the drugs were your solution to life’s problems. Get started on finding new safe positive solutions. Some counseling or therapy would help. So would 12 step meetings, A.A. or N. A. and or other self help groups. You might also try some faith based, spiritual or religious help. Keep going and things can get better.

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  24. I have been clean for a year and a half I was an alcoholic, a chain smoker both cigarettes and marijuana and a codeine addict. My quitting strategy was cold turkey. I recently started having dreams of doing the above drugs and drinking on a daily basis im scared I will relapse. How can I stop these vivid dreams? I have cravings during waking hours and will power keeps me focused and strong. Please help

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  25. I didn’t read through all of the responses here so I’m not sure if my situation was covered. I have “relapse” type dreams as well, but they aren’t related to drugs or alcohol. I smoked cigarettes for more than 40 years and finally quit in September of 2010. To this day I have frequent dreams about smoking. In them I realize that I’m still smoking, or that I started up again. I wake up thinking that the dream was real and I’m so disappointed in myself for having relapsed. I know that other former smokers also have the same kind of dreams. This validates for me what I was taught in my smoking cessation classes – that smoking is as much an addiction as the use of drugs or alcohol.

    One thing I’m not sure I agree with (at least not in the case of smoking) is how a high frequency of these dreams might lead to relapse. For me, having them simply makes me more vigilant in my quit.

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    • My belief is that nicotine in tobacco is a drug like all other drugs. It is in fact one of the most addicting of all drugs. After two cigarettes there is only a 15% chance that person will not become a smoker. All sorts of habits, drug use and behavioral addictions to my way of thinking, alter pathways in the brain. You have wired up a lot of circuits that remember smoking and nicotine. My thought is that as the brain heals you will have “memories of smoking” dreams. If you wake up with cravings and wanting to smoke that could be a relapse trigger for you. Your waking up afraid you have smoked and disappointed says to me the brain is changing the way it thinks about nicotine. Stay off the cigarettes and hopefully you will have a better life. Sounds like you are on your way to being an “EX-smoker.”

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  26. I’ve been more then 10 years cleen (cocaïn). Last night, I dreamed I was shooting heroïn witch I never have done before. I was pannicked in my dream and as I woke up as well. Still, later in my day I feel really bad. My dream implied me shooting, trying to hide my state of drug abuse, and looking my ravaged face in the mirror thinking in anguish that I would have to hide this from my husband and child. The feeling of being stoned was exuisite as well as loathing. I have a hard time washing it away from my head. I am under quite a bit of pressure at work lately.

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    • Not sure what it might mean to you. Look at those around you and see if they are doing things that are not healthy. You may face temptations to do something and so your brain is preparing you. That is my thoughts but absolutely your dream may have other meanings to you.

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    • Ignoring problems is really no solution regardless of the cause of the problem. Ignoring cancer does not keep you from having it. She needs to find someone she can talk this through with and you are probably too close for her to be able to express her feelings without it affecting you. Hope she gets the help she needs.

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  27. I don’t know where else to turn. I am scared to death to sleep anymore, I hate sleep as much as I hate my addict past. I was a slave for over 10 years to Heroine. I have been clean from Heroine, and on methadone for about 4 years now, I relapsed once for about 3 months, and then want right back to only methadone, and of course legally. Since the start I have had these horrible drug nightmares, I wake up feeling physically ill, extremely nauseated and in a state of complete panic. These damn “dreams” (nightmares) are taking control, I feel I can no longer handle them. In my dreams, Im FOREVER chasing the drug, or always looking for it, once in a while Ill actually get it in my hands, but every time one way or another, it ends up lost or misplaced or stolen, basically I never get the chance to do it… I can’t help but have these very very intense cravings, I wake up begging my fiance for help.. somehow help me, thinking that the only way I can ever feel normal again is if I go back on drugs. Since Ive become clean, my mind has become so lost, I feel crazy, literally like im fucking losing it.. I don’t know what to do anymore… I want out of these dreams, If i could stay awake forever I would. I don’t want to feel this way anymore.

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    • Hi Patrica, I really feel for you. You are going through it. My suggestions, for what they are worth, are to find someone locally you can see and talk with. Maybe a therapist or someone in a 12 step group. The place were you are getting your methadone should have someone who can see you or they may be able to make a referral for you. You need help to get better sleep or this will only get worse. Talk with your doctor also about this. Hope you life gets better.

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  28. I dreamt last night, I was smoking meth and had all my pipes laid out on the carpet. They had burn marks all over the bulbs… I use to hit it all the time in 2011-2014 I realised I couldnt put myself through that anymore as I was dealing with issues in my past… Covered them up with the use of heavy drugs. I have been clean ever since and I have smoked weed since I was 10 years old and now I’m 22. I know I was highly addicted as my life revolved around it. I think about it all the time and have some major cravings but I won’t give in. I have been clean for so long and don’t even know how long now. I lost count as the more I kept a record of being clean the worse it got. I just have to remain strong throughout these dreams and keep going I cannot give in. This is not the first time in dreamt of this kind, I have them a lot. I just want them to fade because I wake up feeling as if I have a comedown. 😓

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    • Thanks for sharing that. Hope you find the thing or things you need to get past this. It is really hard to avoid something. Way better to work on yourself and look for something that give your life meaning and purpose. Consider some treatment or a self help group.

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  29. Hi I’ve been clean off heroin for id guess 5 months and ihad recently quit using pot due to legal obligations well anyway now I notice and remember dreams and 5 ,6 times this month I’ve had dreams about finding h and getting large amounts of it and not being able to get needles or getting busted by cops or my friends using it all before I got a chance or not being able to get ahold of my dealer cause a tornado came through and demolished the town but in the end I get so close to getting to use than I wake up in a addict mind set trying to get cash and a way to call my guy (I have no phone ) I never get to use in my dream and I want to cause it seems like it will fulfill my urge idk what to do anymore I’m so close to a relapse but I’m scared to o,d any tips ? I am probably going to rehab maybe that will help

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    • Rehab will help. So would working a recovery program. Self help groups can be very beneficial. The skill you need to work on now is turning off and ignoring the cravings. Find ways to turn those thoughts off and the cravings will be reduced. Just putting down drugs is not all there is to recovery. You have some work to do on yourself to get these cravings to shrink. Best wishes on your recovery.

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  30. I have never used heroin, or any hard drugs for that matter. I mean i drink/smoke pot occasionally with friends but thats it. I keep having dreams about trying H and liking it, i dont know what this means but it is scaring me.

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    • Hi Rachel Many people have written to me about having drug dreams and what do they mean. Dreams are such individual things that what they mean to me may not fit you. Most dreams have layers of meaning and they are tied to emotions.so ask yourself what need or wish is you mind trying to help you with? Are you being tempted to do something risky? Or are you having fears that you or someone close to you may do something that you have been avoiding for a long time? If this dream is really upsetting or tempting you may want to work with a professional counselor and see if they can help you work this out.

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  31. I had a dream I was smoking meth…but I’ve never done it in my life and it made me feel so good and want more…well when I woke up I really wanted some and I don’t know why I could because I’ve never experienced it in my life

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    • Many people have written to me about having drug dreams and what do they mean. Dreams are such individual things that what they mean to me may not fit you. Most dreams have layers of meaning and they are tied to emotions.so ask yourself what need or wish is you mind trying to help you with? Are you being tempted to do something risky? Or are you having fears that you or someone close to you may do something that you have been avoiding for a long time? If this dream is really upsetting or tempting you may want to work with a professional counselor and see if they can help you work this out.

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  32. Glad I found this. I woke up in the middle of the night around an hour ago after a drug dream. I have been clean from heroin for over 3 years. I dreamed of using it, feeling like I could justify or get away with it at work maybe (I work with others in recovery, behavioral health), and how I was going to cut and sell some of the heroin I had. I woke up and after some searching ended up here. I realize these dreams may happen for a while and I need to just deal with it. That demon that is the drug, the addiction, leaves some pretty deep bite marks on a brain, but I am healing. In a spiritual sense, I’ve heard the dreams explained like this: Craving or not, if you’re glad when you wake up that it was only a dream and you didn’t relapse, they are a gift from God. Hang in there folks.

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  33. I am 3 yrs 3 mo clean off of meth. I have the most realistic using dreams. In every one i am with people using smoking out of a pipe and it gets passed to me and i start to light it and the bowl is getting to hot i sm trying to pull the lighter away but something won’t let me and then there is a big explosion and everything in my dream goes black and i wake up. What could this mean?

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    • You need to figure out what it means for you. For me it sounds like hanging out with people who are smoking could really get me burned and my life destroyed. Stay clean and sober but I would suggest you also work on your sobriety. Just not using is not enough for recovery.

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  34. I just googled “dreams about crystal meth”, because more than once now I have had extremely vivid dreams of myself using the drug, being caught using it by close family/friends etc.
    What made me search further is the fact I just smoked a cigarette, I exhaled and it tasted like I had literally just inhaled a hit of meth, this is not the first time either. The strangest experience… Then to come here read the bit on your article that says: “Some drug use dreams are so realistic that the client has the sense of tasting the drug in their mouth or feeling the familiar body changes. This sensation can be especially disturbing and may be a relapse trigger.”
    I’m not sure if you meant it’s possible to have the sensation of tasting the drug whilst awake and sober but I just did. The last time I had any was 2-3 weeks ago. I have smoked it on and off recreationally since late 2013, with gaps in between (2-3 months abstinence at mos, and this didn’t occur, or at least I don’t remember it)
    It has never been an every day thing, more of an every other month thing where I will have a crazy weekend and then walk away, because I know the dangers and the destruction this drug can cause once it takes hold of you. Anyway, I do crave it from time to time and it’s only recently I have woken from strange dreams of me smoking loads of it. Maybe this is, like you say, a sign I am about to ‘relapse’/go back to it, but this is why I’m searching, and I hope I can overcome any temptation as of now I haven’t touched any for a few weeks and as amazing as the high is, I don’t really want to again.. So fingers crossed. Thanks for your article it was good to read.

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    • Thanks for the comment. Glad you liked the post. In the post I was talking about dreams, but yes it is possible to have these experiences while awake and those remembering events can seem very real. Take care of yourself and be careful.

      Like

  35. Pingback: Top Mental Health Blog Posts – counselorssoapbox.com 2015 | counselorssoapbox

  36. I have been clean from herion for 9 months I’m 20 years old . I just recently starting to develop drug dreams , haven’t had drug dreams since I was kicking dope .. It honestly is not a huge deal because I have no cravings at all .. Herion is not an option for me what so ever .. I would just like to know what you think

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  37. Hi used to smoke meth quite heavily for over a year when I was 18. I quit cold turkey and had a lot of dreams for a while afterwards. I’m almost 27 now I live in a different country I live a completely different life. I have a loving partner a good job a house, I haven’t used for maybe eight years and all of a sudden I’ve started dreaming about using again. I find it very on nerving because I enjoy it in my dreams and now I find myself thinking about it during the day. ThInking about it enough to look it up and post this… What does it mean?

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    • Cant be sure what that might mean for you, but my best guess is that your brain is suggesting drugs to you as possibility. Why you brain thinks you might want to do drugs again sounds like something you need to explore.

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  38. I just had a dream I died from a needle. My drug of choice was cocaine and opiates, i have been almost 3 years clean. I used to live in the city I’m originally from a small town. I moved back home about 2 years ago, i moved back to change my life, to get my life back &bcuz i became pregnant. I did everything I could to stay clean, did a 21 day inpatient treatment set everything up on my own.i did all kinds of programs then i called c a s to tell them I was expecting*people were telling me not to* good thing I did, they would have whisked him away before i even got to hold him.. they were going to put my son in a temporary home but the worker checked everything I did and I got to keep my son. I also got my other 2 back. I really did it and before i did it felt impossible to get them back which made me use even more but thats a whole different story. Anyways my dream was…I was living in the city and I was with the father of my now 1 year old, he was gone for a really long time and when he came home he was all junked out we went to the bathroom and the kids were In the living room watching t.v. I was being crabby towards him because he was gone for so long and he came back all junked out. Then he asked if I wanted some i said okay very hesitant about it and so he set me and poked my arm and I dropped down to the floor and i tasted the coke in my mouth, all of a sudden everything went black and I felt my body shaking, I couldn’t open my eyes and I was looking around in darkness then I looked up harder and I can see 2 holes that looked like my eye sockets well they were my eye sockets, I can see my childs dad looking at me and i can see the ceiling through my 2 eye socket holes. And I can hear my babies watching t.v. I tried yelling but I couldn’t. My body wasn’t shaking no more either all i was thinking was “my kids are going to see me like this” this is it” It felt like a feeling of truly dying and I was so worried for my kids, I wanted to get up for them but I couldn’t . Then when I woke up I was positioned real awkard, I was sweaty. It felt so real like most my dreams . Its been 3 years next month since I have used and I still dream about getting high or I dream about withdrawaling and they feel so real so vivid I can actually taste the coke in my dreams.. I hate it.me and my childs dad just broke up in January (he relapsed and now drugs are more important then us😥 … I just wanted to know what it meant. I was searching around Google hoping to interp my dream and came across this site.. I thought I’d share my dream too🙂 please no bashing towards mè. My past is my past let it rest in peace ✌

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    • Sounds like when your child’s father relapsed it has brought back some old fears and memories. You are on the right track, stay clean and avoid people who are using. Twenty or thirty days of treatment are not going to change the memories the brain has of what you have been through.Try to get some continuing after care or attend 12 step or other support groups. Hang in there and things do get better.

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  39. My mother has been having nightmares about her fiance and his ex girlfriend holding her down and shooting her up with drugs forcefully. She doesn’t know why she is having the dreams and she wonders what it means like a dream translater. She isn’t using in her dreams because she wants to but is being forced. She is 9 months clean but keep having this same dreams over and over. Is there a way to help her? Is there a meaning to her dream?

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    • She probably should explore this dream with a professional or a sponsor. One possibility is that with 9 months clean she is recognizing that others she knows could endanger her sobriety. She should probably take a look at all her relationships and see how they are changing now that she is off drugs.

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  40. I had this dream last night:

    My mom and I were in the living room, and she pulled out 2 big bags of heroin and was very excited to show me. She started snorting it literally in front of me. Obviously upset, I had some words with her and went to my room and circled every picture of us on my wall so that I could take them down later. I then went off to work. Coming home, I felt uneasy and walked inside. I looked at my ID and put it back in my wallet, then put my wallet on the table. I walked into my room and noticed all the pictures j circled already taken down and the circles had disappeared. At this point, I was nervous something would happen. I attempted to lock my bedroom door, but it wouldn’t lock. As I was trying to lock it, my mom turned the bedroom door, ran at me and repeatedly stabbed me in the neck. I was breathing heavily and played dead so that she’d leave, which she did.

    My mom is going on 2 years clean. I’m not sure where this dream came from at all. I’m 15 hours from home at college, but keep a strong relationship with all of my family, including my mom. Could you interpret this at all?

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    • The important thing would be how you would interpret this. My guess is that you are having some worry’s about your mother using again. If she did use you to could have a falling out that damaged the relationship and you might need to remove her from your life.Hope everything works out OK for you.

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  41. I just took a nap yesterday afternoon and ended up having a very vivid drug dream. I dreamt I was holding a full pipe of meth and was looking at it with wonder. I was also holding shards in my hand and I kept telling myself to let it go but I didn’t . I didn’t see myself use in my dream but I felt the implication was there to use.
    The people present were lifelike and the drug was so much that I woke up anxious with the sweats and a very dry mouth. I’m going to be at my 1 year clean and sober and drug free as of September 1 of this year.
    I have had people around who I used to use with. (Small towns make finding friends hard for me.) No one even smokes in my house as a rule. No drugs either and only mild drinking by those legal to do so. I don’t partake in any of it.
    Why did I have this dream??? Since my addiction the first time I ever tried meth I have never been clean and sober and smoke free for a year. I will meet this goal, I just wish my mind wouldn’t give me these dreams. Has anyone else found they were having these dreams when approaching their first year clean and sober??? I had used this drug with weed and alcohol and during my active addiction had tried needles, coke, and heroin. ..Imput appreciated..Thanks.

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    • It is common to hear that after a period of being clean and sober a person will start thinking that they might be able to use again in a controlled manner. This never turns out to be true. Lots of relapses occur around sobriety anniversaries. Possible you brain is recognizing the risk of relapse is increasing and your being around things that remind you of your using days may be resulting in cravings. You need to reach out to positive people who can help you get through this. Sorry it has taken me a while to get to responding to comments. My hope for you is that you will get through this without using.

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  42. Omg I used to have drug dreams at least 3 times a week when I was sober and they were so realistic I would wake up sweating and my heart would be racing. I literally almost cried a few times after waking up from these dreams and seeing that it was gone because it wasn’t real. I sometimes dreamt that I was getting high but the most common drug dream I had went something like this. I would be loading a nice chunky solid shard (crystal meth) in the pipe and pulled out my lighter to melt it down into a fat white puddle, letting it crack back (dry up) and melting it down again to take a hit but as soon as I’m about to inhale I wake up and it’s all gone. It’s such a fucked up feeling like I was being teased in my dreams and made me crave meth even more. I’ve been addicted to meth for almost 8 years now and unfortunately I’m actively using again. The biggest reasons I keep on relapsing is because the intense cravings and withdrawal are a living hell and seem to last forever. I would rather be high and happy then sober and miserable but I’m really hoping one day that I’ll just end up getting so tired of meth that I hate it and quit for good because I know I can’t go on like this forever. I’ve only came close to hitting “rock bottom” once a long time ago but besides that time I’ve been hiding my addiction from my family and everyone I know except other meth users.

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    • People finally decide to quit for all kinds of reasons. I hope you find your reason before it is too late. Residential treatment helps many people because it interrupts the usage long enough for the cravings to subside. You may what to work with a counselor or twelve step sponsor and see it they can help you get past those carvings. My hope for you is that you get clean soon, before it is too late.

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  43. I have been having using dreams lately where other I care about are using ,and not myself. This evening I had a dream about myself giving in with them and using and feeling so awful I woke up in the same state of my dream balling my eyes out. I am 4 years sober from drugs and alcohol . My spouse is a normie and recently admitted to doing a few lines of cocaine. While alcohol ended up putting me at my rock bottom, if I had a choice cocaine would be my favorite. I was able to quit that cold turkey without rehab, and actually have been free of that for 10yrs(minus the bump I did before going into detox). These dreams did not start until the blast two years, and that is how long my spouse and I have been together. He 100% supports my sobriety and has told me he would take whatever drastic measures to ensure I do not relapse . Please help me figure out what is causing these dreams? They aren’t very real and intense , and I try to not let them affect my waking hours but irbid quite difficult .

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    • Can’t help wonder what you think they mean. that is usually the best gauge. My guess would be that with your experiences there were things about your spouse that your mind is wary of. You suspected him of drug use even before he told you. He cant make you use or keep you from using but if he really wants to support your sobriety he needs to give it up also.Hard to have a good relationship when one of you is using and trying to keep secrets.

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  44. I am an ex pot smoker. I did experience dreams where i smoked pot in and felt panicked that i had ruined my recovery. I now take ecstasy/mdma on a weekend basis and coming off it i have crazy dreams. However, the last two nights i have been doing a different substance in my dreams. One ive never done? My mates do a bit of ice but i have never. I got on pills this weekend and they were on meth, a couple of days before another mate was trying to convince ne to try a pipe. Could this be why im dreaming of it?

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    • Being around people who are using increases the risk you will use. This sounds like a high risk situation to me. You brain seems to be offering you some choices. If you stay on the path you are on, you can already see where it is likely to go.

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  45. I have been clean from alcohol and drugs for more than 25 years. But, I just had a dream that I relapsed on Cocaine. This is mainly because I was recently involved with a male that was in early sobriety and he relapsed back into drinking and using drugs. I have naturally been thinking about him a lot and very concerned about his safety because he went back to indulging in using and all the negative behavior that goes along with this. The dream definitely involved me using with him. As he was the culprit in the dream. The person who had the drugs in the dream. OMG!!! Very Scary!!! This to me seems to be a warning dream for me to be very cautious. Also to continue to stay away from this person.

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    • Sounds like you got the message your brain was sending through those dreams. For a person in recovery being around a person who is using is never safe. There is no such a thing as having enough sobriety that you can take chances again. Take care.

      Like

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