There is a lot of talk these days about the coronavirus, and while the extent of its impact is still in question, it does raise the issue of what to do about going into work if you’re feeling sick.
Putting the coronavirus to one side, there’s still the highly contagious seasonal flu. If you go to work with the flu, you will undoubtedly pass it on to someone else. Then again, there’s the common cold. It makes you miserable but struggling through sniffles and the occasional cough can be a better option than taking time off and coming back to a massive backlog of work.
Unfortunately, not every employee has a choice in the matter. Sometimes, a job or financial situation means calling in sick will result in serious negative consequences. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 63 percent of people who work in the service industry, including those who cook and serve food, do not have paid sick leave available to them. Furthermore, the wages lost to three days of unpaid, missed work can equal a month’s worth of groceries or utility bills, according to The Economic Policy Institute.
If you do have paid sick leave and aren’t sure if you want to use it, put yourself in the shoes of your co-workers. Do they want to hear you sneeze every 5 minutes? Do they want to have to avoid getting into an enclosed area with you all day?
What You Should Do if You’re Sick
The last thing you want to do when you’ve fallen ill is to think about serious issues and perform physical labor. However, staying home when you’re sick isn’t mandatory.
To be clear, there are many different kinds of ‘sick’, from coming down with a sore throat, to having the full-blow flu, to a bit of chest congestion at the tail end of a cold. If you feel sick but still capable of working on premises, the CDC suggests you work separately from others in your workplace. However, if you literally can’t get out of bed, running a fever or can’t focus on anything, you should definitely stay home. If you’re feeling a bit sick and have the option of working from home, you should do that.
If you start to feel rundown at work, like you’re coming down with something, the CDC suggests going home. If you have a fever, you should stay home until at least 24 hours after your fever has broken, without fever-reducing medicines, or after your condition has improved significantly.
It’s important to note that you can treat an oncoming cold or flu before it completely knocks you down. If you’re starting to feel a bit sick, make sure you’re getting enough sleep each night, avoiding alcohol, eating healthy foods and taking vitamin supplements. Regularly rinsing your sinus is with saline has also been shown to tamp down symptoms of an oncoming cold.
We Can Help You Find a More Accommodating Job Situation
If you are currently working a job with limited options when it comes to being sick, you may want to find a new job situation. Please contact Career Concepts today to learn about the highly accommodating job situations we currently have available.