One in four Brits reckon they’re more likely get ill over the Christmas break than any other time of the year, according to research.
A poll of 2,000 working adults in the UK found 46 per cent think they’re more susceptible to illness at Christmas because it’s the first time they’ve been able to properly relax after working hard all year.
Two thirds agreed that when they have time off work and allow themselves to unwind, their body just ‘shuts down’.
Almost half reckon they’re more likely to get ill over Christmas because more people are ill with colds, flu and winter bugs in December.
And one third suspect the extra intake of alcohol and indulgent food over the festive period lowers their defences.
For three in 10, it’s all the late nights socialising and attending Christmas parties that causes them to succumb to the sniffles.
The research was conducted by Well Pharmacy, which launched an online pharmacy service in December.
Tan Kaur, Pharmacist at Well Pharmacy said: “Becoming unwell over the Christmas period is a common complaint.
“The cold weather helps some germs prosper, and at this time of year, we’re all huddled indoors in close contact with a high number of people, allowing illness to spread more easily.”
“And during a season when we have lots to organise, and hectic social lives, getting ill can make our festive season miserable rather than merry.”
The study also found one in four of the population have had to host Christmas Day while feeling awful, and nearly a fifth have missed the big day altogether because they couldn’t get out of bed.
Sixteen per cent even missed their annual Christmas party because they were at home fighting off an illness rather than being out with colleagues.
Fifty-six per cent of Brits have had a cold at Christmas time, 33 per cent have been struck down with flu, and three in 10 have had a nasty sore throat.
On average, these Christmas illnesses lasted for around five days, with one in 20 unfortunates left bedridden for up to 10 days.
Nearly a quarter felt so ill they were forced to visit the doctor over the Christmas break, waiting on average more than four days for an appointment.
One fifth needed prescription medication over Christmas – but 17 per cent found their medication wasn’t in stock.
A further 13 per cent had to make multiple trips to the pharmacy because their prescription wasn’t ready, and nearly a tenth said they were too busy to collect it.
Nearly half of Brits polled by OnePoll would be interested in ordering a prescription online or through an app to save time in future.
And a huge 80 per cent say they would consider using this type of service if they could order multiple prescriptions on behalf of their family members.
Tan Kaur, added: “Ordering prescriptions through a reputable pharmacy online or using an app is a safe, hassle-free way to get your medication, which could be particularly handy over the busy festive period.”