LONDON, October 27, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --
Whilst two thirds of us have taken genuine sick days
Nearly a third of the nation (32%) have taken a fake sick day this year, according to a new study released by Actimel. Whilst the top reason for women pulling a sickie was due to feeling under pressure with their workload (41%), over a quarter of men (27%) attributed their fake sick day to recover from a hangover following a heavy drinking session the night before. Surprisingly, also a fifth of men (20%) admitted they felt bored with their jobs, warranting them time to lounge around at home!
What are we doing on our fake sick days?
Instead of heading into the office, the nation takes to the couch and relaxes with Lorraine, Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby from This Morning and Loose Women as 84% admit they love day-time television.
- Over half of the UK (53%) binge on Netflix
- Nearly a fifth of men (18%) meet up with friends
- 1 in 5 of Scots (23%) say taking a sick day 'gives them a thrill'
- 17% of Londoners chill in a café to pass the time
- 93% of women are too nervous to leave the house in case someone catches them
- 18% of men obviously have a lot to catch up on as they admit pulling a sickie to get on with life admin. This is the same for a quarter of people in Northern Ireland (25%)
When it comes down to it, we're all pretty empathetic towards our colleagues when we do pull a sickie as more than six in ten (63%) said they feel guilty for doing so but feel 'it's totally worth it', where-as Londoners (38%) admit they 'weren't bothered' about not turning up for a day's work every now and then.
Even though 'pulling a sickie' seems to be quite popular, over two thirds of the nation (67%) do in fact go into the office when feeling genuinely under the weather even if they're infectious, with over three quarters (76%) of Londoners preferring to get on with their work rather than getting better with bed rest.
Women are more likely than men to take one or more days off to get better (68% versus 60%) but it's the 25-34 year olds who come out tops for taking genuine sick days (72%). As with fake sick days, even when we're genuinely ill over 1 in 3 (39%) still feel guilty for taking the time off, with nearly a third (32%) worrying they are letting their colleagues down and over a quarter (29%) anxious that their boss will question their commitment.
1 in 4 of those who did venture into the office when under the weather said this is due to having too much work and no one to cover them. This was highest again in the 25-34 year old category, with 50% of those being in mid-level, management roles.
Psychologist Dr David Lewis analysed the data commenting, "It is interesting that nearly two thirds of the nation (63%) say 'it's worth it' to pull a fake sick day, but those who feel genuinely poorly go into the office so as not to put extra workload onto their colleagues. This shows an interesting correlation between wanting and needing a day off from our chosen career, which is a core component of how we view ourselves and form part of our identity. Humans are capable of adapting in any situation and in the workplace where there are more than capable colleagues, we should feel that taking time off to recuperate and get our health back on track is ok.'
GP Dr Sarah Jarvis says, "Stress and overall immune health are closely linked, so whether you've pulled a sickie or are feeling genuinely ill, it's important to listen to your body and maintain a healthy immune system. There are simple ways which can help you support your immune system including gentle exercise, from yoga to jogging. A healthy balanced diet will give us most of the vitamins we need - but many of us are short of vitamin D, which (like vitamin B12) is linked to immune health. If you can't get enough vitamin D from sunlight, consider a supplement"
Top tips to maintaining a healthy immune system from Dr Sarah Jarvis and Dr David Lewis
- You are what you eat. The more fruit and vegetables you eat, the less likely you are to come down with minor ailments like coughs and colds. Ideally, eat a rainbow - different coloured veg and fruit contain different combinations of vitamins
- Treasure your friends! While we may catch colds from other people, people who have close relationships with friends have stronger immune systems than loners. Make time after work to connect with friends, no matter how tired you are
- Maybe grandma was right? Colds are caused by viruses, not by getting cold. But cold viruses may find it easier to bypass the natural defence systems in your upper airways if you breathe them in with cold air. No need to huddle indoors all winter, but wear a scarf over your mouth and nose if it's really chilly
- Get a good night's sleep. Research suggests at least 7 hours is necessary to maintain good health. Avoid working at mentally demanding tasks right up to the moment you turn off the lights, steer clear of caffeinated drinks (i.e. tea, coffee, colas) for at least three hours before bedtime. Do not view your computer, tablet or phone in bed - the blue light from such devices makes it far harder to fall asleep
- Do regular, brisk, exercise, whilst enjoying some fresh air. This helps you stay slim and trim and stimulates the brain's production of mood enhancing substances, such as endorphins. Feeling good about life helps safeguard physical well-being
- Reduce stress. Give yourself at least 15 minutes 'me time' daily. Sit or lie down in a quiet room. Close your eyes and imagine yourself in some beautiful place where you feel completely safe and at peace. Slow your breathing to six inhalations and exhalations per minute and, each time you breathe out, feel yourself becoming more and more deeply relaxed as all the stress and tension flows away from your body and into the surrounding air
As well as L. Casei Danone, a bottle of Actimel contains vitamins B6 and D, which help support the normal function of the immune system. For more information plus other tips on how to stay healthy visit http://www.actimel.co.uk
Notes to Editors:
- About the research: The Effects of a Sick Day study was run by Actimel, Cohn&Wolfe and Markitters4dc, July 2015. It polled 2,000 adults in the UK.
- About Actimel: Actimel is a yogurt drink available in 12 delicious flavours and a great way to start the day as part of a balanced breakfast. Each bottle contains 10 billion exclusive L. Casei Danone cultures and vitamins B6 and D. These vitamins support the normal function of the immune system
- Actimel is available as 8 packs in a variety of flavours including strawberry, multi-fruit & blueberry from all major supermarkets. RSP £2.78
For More Information:
For more information about Actimel, visit http://www.actimel.co.uk
Region Stats London · Londoners are most likely to take a fake sick day (39%) · 38% of Londoners admit they aren't bothered when they call in sick when they are not unwell · 17% of Londoners go chill in a café when taking a sick day · 76% of Londoners will go in even if they're infectious · 48% of Londoners who go into work when sick, go because they feel that they have too much to do and no one to cover them Yorkshire · 67% of Yorkshire are the illest region taking more than one real sick day off South West · South West are the healthiest region (36%) with no days off sick in a year · South West feel most guilty (76%) when they call in sick when they are not unwell · 40% of SW feel pressure to come into work when ill · 50% of North East will stay home and recover but 40% feel they're letting down their colleagues North East · 50% of the North East have taken a sick day because they feel too stressed to go to work Midlands · Midlands have the worst bosses with 35% worrying they will question their commitment when they take a sick day Scotland · Scotland get the biggest thrill (23%) when they call in sick when they are not unwell · 60% of Scotland watch Netflix when taking a sick day Ireland · A quarter of Ireland conduct life admin when taking a sick day
SOURCE Danone Actimel