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When to Take a Sick Day

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Signs that you should take a sick day

It's morning, and that means it’s time for a quick breakfast before rushing off to work. Unfortunately, it's not always that easy, especially when you’re under the weather and trying to decide if you should tough it out and head to work or take a sick day.

If you're suffering from any of the issues below, taking a sick day may be a good option to explore.

When to Take a Sick Day

Take a Sick Day: When Your Stomach Tells You To

Is the idea of breakfast leaving you a little nauseous? When food isn't exactly an appetizing thought, you probably want to call in sick. Why? For starters, no one wants to use a public restroom if a sudden illness officially arrives, and if you don’t have the energy to eat adequate meals, you probably won’t have the energy to do much else.

Take a Sick Day: When Your Head Is Pounding And Other Symptoms Are Making It Worse

Unless you're a superhero, you've definitely experienced a headache. At best, it's merely a painful distraction you can work through. But if it’s accompanied by a cough, congestion, aching muscles, and fatigue, you’ll likely have a really difficult time concentrating — even if you’re working from home.

Put the computer down and reach for a Theraflu PowerPod instead. Ready for use with most single-serve brewing machines (which means they require almost no energy from you to prepare), these powerful pods can be taken every four hours while symptoms persist, and they can help treat headaches and body aches associated with the common cold or flu.

Take a Sick Day: When Stress Feels Insurmountable

Ever feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders? We all have daily stressors. It's unavoidable. After all, not only are there workplace responsibilities, but, for most, there are also even more important family responsibilities.

Unfortunately, according to a recent study, this is especially a concern for women with high job strain, as they may be 38 percent more likely to experience a cardiovascular event and 67 percent more likely to suffer from a heart attack than their counterparts in low-strain situations. UCSF's Dr. Michelle A. Albert, a former fellow at Brigham and Women's Hospital and lead study researcher at Harvard Medical School, went so far as to suggest that "elevated job strain, a form of psychological stress, has long-term cardiovascular health effects in women."

Taking a “mental health” sick day can be just as important as taking one for physical reasons. If you need a day to decompress and to get your thoughts together, take it! Your long-term health will benefit.

Using a sick day is never ideal, but if you practice a little TLC toward your body and mind the next time you’re feeling unwell, you'll likely be giving yourself a better chance at prime performance going forward.