The Canaries' 2-1 win over Reading took them to 38 points with four games remaining - seven clear of the 18th-placed Latics, who have a game in hand.
But Hughton appears to believe Roberto Martinez's side are capable of a repeat of their spring survival acts of recent seasons and thinks his team need to add to their current 38-point haul.
"I think it (safe total) will be more than that," Hughton said. "If you look at the team that is furthest away from us, apart from QPR and Reading, it is Wigan.
"They have a game in hand. It is about possibly what they can do. When you look at these teams, they are capable of winning games.
"All the teams around are capable of winning games. The simple answer is I don't know, but I think it will certainly be around that 40-mark."