Does a lack of sleep cause hallucinations?
Most people feel overwhelming sleep urges after 72 hours without sleep. Most people have trouble staying awake. A lack of sleep for three days severely impairs cognitive abilities, such as multitasking, recalling details, and maintaining focus.
It can be challenging to finish simple tasks when sleep-deprived at this level. It also affects our emotions. Those who have been sleep-deprived for this length of time may be easily irritated.
They can experience depression, anxiety, or paranoia. Sleep deprivation also makes it more difficult for people to process other people’s emotions. Participants in one study could not recognize angry or happy facial expressions when sleep-deprived for 30 hours.
Finally, sleep deprivation can profoundly affect perception after several days. It is possible to experience hallucinations and illusions; it happens when you see something unreal. For instance, seeing a sign and thinking it’s a person.