Sleep deprivation can lead to slower mental processing and forgetfulness, reported Fast Company.

Lack of sleep can slowed down your alertness and response time, says psychotherapist Jenny Maenpaa. Researchers have connected lethargic behavior and slower mental processing with poor sleep quality, she says, meaning even if you know the answer, it’s hard to access that information when you’re tired.

Sure, you may not be a surgeon or a pilot whose job depends on split-second decisions, but you definitely won’t be able to perform your A game if you regularly miss sleep. “You will still find over time that if your alertness and performance suffer, it is impossible to do your job to expected standards,” she says. “This may be reflected in preventable mistakes, poorly written emails and reports, or a critical performance review.”

As therapist and cofounder of The Happy Sleeper, Heather Turgeon explains, when we miss sleep, it leads to reduced brain activity in the regions involved in working memory. This means we can’t hold onto information or think creatively.

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