Tomorrow is National Sickie Day - make sure you know your first aid

As employers across the country brace themselves for a deluge of sickness, St John Ambulance is making sure we stay safe.
Feeling a bit under the weather? Picture: St John Ambulance.Feeling a bit under the weather? Picture: St John Ambulance.
Feeling a bit under the weather? Picture: St John Ambulance.

The first Monday in February is the day which has traditionally seen the highest number of UK employees absent from work through sickness.

It is estimated that around 350,000 people will call in sick for work, costing our economy £45million in wages, lost hours and overtime.

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Leading first aid charity St John Ambulance is issuing advice on how to deal with some of the most common ailments, just in case they happen to strike on National Sickie Day ...

Graham Ellis, a spokesperson from St John Ambulance, said: “The common illnesses suffered by those genuinely ill on National Sickie Day can be extremely uncomfortable and unpleasant.

"We encourage anyone who is unwell to follow our tips.

"For those practicing their fake sick voice and using far-fetched excuses to pull a sickie, first aid advice isn’t needed here, though you may want to research your symptoms if you want to make it sound convincing!”

Headaches: Sit or lie down somewhere quiet, and hold something cold against your head. This could be a bag of peas, or ice wrapped in a cloth, or a cold compress if you have one (apply for no more than ten minutes).

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You can also take the recommended dose of pain killers, such as paracetamol (for adults only).

Hangover: Enjoyed your post-Dry January weekend a little too much?

Dehydration is one of the main causes of hangover symptoms.

Make sure you drink lots of water and/or an oral rehydration solution to stay hydrated.

Vomiting and diarrhoea: Vomiting and diarrhoea are usually caused by irritation of the digestive system and can occur together or separately.

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Both can be triggered by parasites, viruses or bacteria and it causes the body to lose essential salts and fluids risking dehydration.

When you’ve stopped vomiting, sip a glass of water or unsweetened fruit juice.

Take frequent small sips to help replace the fluid you have lost.

When you are feeling hungry again, eat foods that are easily digested, such as bread, pasta or potatoes for the first 24 hours.

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Food poisoning: Eaten a dodgy Super Bowl party hot dog? You may feel the effects of food poisoning within a few hours, and will often be sick or have diarrhoea.

However, in some cases it can take up to three days to get over food poisoning. If you think you might have food poisoning, these are the six key things to look for: feeling sick, vomiting, stomach cramps, diarrhoea,headache, or fever.

The most important thing is to drink water and/or an oral rehydration solution so you don’t get dehydrated.

Flu: Flu is a common infectious viral illness spread by coughs and sneezes. It can be very unpleasant, but you'll usually start to feel better within a week.

"You are advised to rest, keep warm and drink plenty of fluids. You may also take paracetamol or ibuprofen (as directed) to relieve aches."

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