Getting a good night’s sleep can be a challenge in a fast-paced, busy world. You have to juggle a lot of things in life, like family, children, work, and hobbies, things that make going to sleep at an early hour seem impossible. However, without enough sleep, some people may suffer problems that make it hard to work or perform everyday activities. A lack of sleep may even lead to mental and emotional problems.

Healthline explains the various problems a lack of sleep may cause. During the night when you sleep, your brain creates pathways between brain neurons which help you remember new information you have learned during the day. However, if you do not get enough sleep, you have a hard time remembering new things the next day since your brain did not have the time it needed to form these new pathways. You might also experience problems concentrating.

Sleep deprivation that goes on for too long can seriously impact your mood and mental state. Some people lose their patience more often. They become irritable or depressed. Mood swings may occur. A person might feel happy one moment and angry the next. Bad moods can also impair your creativity and judgment. They can make it hard to do work or enjoy yourself in leisure activities.

In more severe cases, a lack of sleep can create mental problems or make them seriously worse. Some people with bipolar disorder experience mania. Other problems may manifest themselves, such as depression, anxiety, acting impulsively, or even thoughts of suicide. A lack of sleep might even cause someone to hallucinate. Sometimes lack of sleep forces people to microsleep, meaning they fall asleep for a few seconds or minutes.

Because of these problems, WebMD explains that a lack of sleep may push someone closer to early death. So it is important to get at the root of your problem with sleeping. Sometimes people just need to set aside some time to sleep, but other people may possess serious psychological or physical problems that need treatment.