Seasonal cheers! 1 in 5 workers drink so much at the office party they 'call in sick the next day'

One in five employees drinks so much at the office Christmas party that they call in sick the next day, according to a new study.

The same number of British workers party for ten hours, while an additional third are too tired or hungover to 'function properly' the following morning.

Staff drink an average 5.5 units at their office bash, according to research by Aviva UK Health.

The cost to the UK economy of employees phoning in sick the morning after the office Christmas party is 39million hours.

Party season: One in five employees drinks so much at the office Christmas party that they call in sick the next day, according to a study

Party season: One in five employees drinks so much at the office Christmas party that they call in sick the next day, according to a study

To combat this, Christmas parties should finish by 11pm to ensure staff are sober at work the following day, the study found.

But a conscientious 20 per cent of workers make sure they get home early enough to get a good night sleep. However, one in ten men fail to go to bed at all.

Two thirds of workers drink more during December than in an average month and over half admit to missing out on sleep because of parties.

Public sector workers are the worst offenders, with 70 per cent drinking more in December and averaging almost six units per party.

Teachers consume the fewest number of units at just five per event.

A fifth of workers conveniently 'forget' embarrassing incidents from the night before

A fifth of workers have conveniently 'forgotten' embarrassing incidents from the night before, a third ate junk food and a third took to the dance floor.

Almost 15 per cent flirt more than usual but just two per cent confess to having one night stands.

One in six mix their drinks and one in ten speak their mind to friends or colleagues.

Dr Doug Wright, from Aviva UK Health, said: 'It's important staff have a chance to let their hair down and enjoy socialising with friends and colleagues at this time of year.

'However, a lack of sleep and the general 'morning after the night before' hangover can leave you feeling the worse for wear.

'For those who need to drive or operate machinery the next day the dangers of overdoing it are obvious but being in good form is equally important for many jobs.

'With alcohol flowing freely it can be easy to lose track of exactly how much you're drinking, especially if generous party-goers are continually topping-up your glass.

'For those that need to be at work the next day it's a good rule of thumb to work backwards from your planned start time - one hour per unit drunk to be processed through your system.

'You can also help the process along by ensuring you don't drink on an empty stomach and alternate alcohol with soft drinks.

'None of these are fail safe options though, so make sure you plan ahead to keep yourself and others safe.'

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