The issue of presenteeism persists as 55% of workers admit turning up to work when they are genuinely ill


New research by oil brand Olbas found that over half of workers (55%) don’t take time off when they are genuinely ill. It found that 19% of workers continue to work, even when at home sick.


The report revealed that those earning more than £50,000 are more likely to call in sick when hungover, compared to those earning below £10,000. Bosses ranked to be the most likely. Further research also found that 61% rely on over the counter medication, with 35% taking two or more to help get through the day.


However, although a large percentage come in when ill, the survey found that one in ten will happily call in sick for other reasons. 10% said they have called in sick because they ‘felt tired’, had a hangover (6%) and 10% of 18-24 year olds to watch television. A third of 48 to 54 year olds (38%) also confessed to spending their sick days catching-up with friends on Facebook.


According to the Daily Mail, Dr Roger Henderson, a GP who works with Olbas, said employees need to reassess how they spend their time off sick. “When suffering from a cold, flu or other viral infection it is important to give yourself time to rest and to seek medicines to help alleviate symptoms, aiding a quicker recovery. Getting enough sleep and avoiding pressure and stress is crucial, alongside staying comfortable, keeping hydrated and eating well.


“It is always sensible to stay at home if unwell, to rest and recover more quickly, as well as avoiding passing on any infections to your work colleagues. Plus, it's easier to stay hydrated and eat well at home than at work. Alleviating symptoms with medicines can help you get a better night's sleep and feel more comfortable - but remember not to do too much activity too quickly when you start feeling you are improving.”


The research found that Brits are most likely to stay under a duvet and watch TV when ill. Samantha George, brand manager for Olbas Max Strength, said: “It is shocking that so many Brits don't take time off work when genuinely unwell but so many are happy to take time off when suffering from a hangover.


“Our bodies need time to rest and recover if we are to get better as quickly as possible; continuing to check e-mails and respond to work queries at home means we aren't fully resting.”