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Should I go to work hungover

Should I Go To Work Hungover?

If you doubled down on the doubles last year, you’re not alone. Lockdowns, stress, isolation, and just plain boredom sent alcohol sales skyrocketing. One study noted that 75% of adults added an extra day of drinking per month. Go-cups, more liberal online delivery policies, and numerous other changes made it easy to get booze even when bars were closed. Maybe you started 2022 with a dry January. Unfortunately a springtime Taco Tuesday transformed Wednesday morning into a headachy, queasy mess. Should you gut it out no matter what your guts are saying? If you’re wondering should I go to work hungover, here are a few factors to consider.

Do You Have Sick Days?


Around ten percent of working age adults don’t get any sick days. Some companies lump vacation and sick days into one basket –– and many people don’t want to “waste” a vacation day staying home and feeling miserable.Chances are even if you have sick days, you aren’t using them. Around twenty percent of millennials didn’t use a single sick day. If you think youth is on your side in this, well half of all folks over age 45 didn’t take a single sick day either. So if you feel truly terrible and are asking should I go to work hungover, consider calling in.


You won’t be alone. The average worker takes two sick days a year to deal with morning afters. Almost 80 percent of workers under forty admitted to doing so, while on average those in the tech profession spent over one week a year at home nursing hangovers. 


Before you make a decision take a contrast shower ––  where you alternate cold and hot water. Besides being a great way to wake up, it increases the blood ’s circulation in your body. Besides battling inflammation, it will rinse off that last layer of sweaty booze. Remember, as your liver metabolizes alcohol it generates heat while your damaged endocrine system that regulates hormones can trigger hot flashes. So dress in comfortable, breathable clothing. Before you leave, be honest. Are you really ready for work? Don’t take the chance that you’re still intoxicated (risking a DUI). Call in. You don’t need to mention the cause but if asked provide the symptoms.


Alcohol Weakens Immunity


Most of us are far more aware of viruses than we were in 2019. While your body is recovering from the damage alcohol did to it, your immune system is weaker. In fact, excessive alcohol consumption can make you more vulnerable to respiratory illnesses like COVID-19. Chances are you didn’t get a good night’s sleep either –– which makes your immune system even weaker. So if you rely on mass transit delivering you to a crowded, poorly ventilated office then reconsider. It’s better to miss a day’s work from a hangover than a week or more from getting sick. 

Can You Work Remotely?


Far more of us are working from home than ever before. If you aren’t currently a remote worker, see if you can do at least some of your job that way. Even if there are tasks you can’t complete away from the office, surely there are things you can do.


If you are staying home, take care of yourself.  Have a nice bowl of oatmeal with blueberries. Complex carbohydrates in oatmeal can improve your mood while nutrients in blueberries stave off inflammation. Enjoy some green tea with honey which delivers head-ache reducing caffeine without the diuretic properties of coffee. Since you’re already likely dehydrated, you don’t need to lose more fluids. In fact, make sure you hydrate. It’s okay to take an over-the-counter medication but remember the ingredients in pain relievers like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen sodium can cause toxic liver disease. So don’t overdo it and avoid taking them with alcohol. After all, your liver is already paying the price for your dalliances. 


The next day when you feel better, revisit your goals for the year. You know you won’t be achieving them by drinking in the middle of the week. So write down a list of the top five things you want to achieve this year. Keep it in your wallet so you’ll see it the next time you offer to pick up a round of shots. Staying focused on the future makes it easier to either turn down invites to pub crawls or at least limit your consumption. However, if you find yourself constantly breaking pledges to cut back and consistently fighting hangovers, it may be time to seek help. There’s no shame in admitting your drinking has become a problem. Plus, many counselors are online –– eliminating a number of excuses for not seeking treatment. Still, if it’s just an occasional hangover, take heart. Last year a German court ruled it’s an “illness” so you shouldn’t feel bad enjoying an extra sick day.

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