The first Monday of February has officially been named the National Sickie Day in the UK, for it is the day when more workers call in sick than any other day of the year, according to a new survey.
The survey from Friends Provident revealed that almost 30,000 staff missed work this time last year, and the figure was expected to soar this year.
And it is believed that the trend is because of a combination of post Christmas blues, the miserable weather, and growing economic gloom.
The Britain Under Pressure report found that, nearly two thirds of the people in the country feel more prone to illness, more stressed and less fit and healthy than it was three years ago.
Owing to recession concerns, one in five people was found to sleep less, while more than a third were worrying more.
The authors of the report cautioned that the phenomenon could lead to anything from headaches to clinical depression, or a range of stress-related illnesses.
According to them, in the coming years, National Sickie Day could become a much more serious and long-term problem because Britons anticipated their unhealthy habits would get worse.
The research found that 18-30-year-olds had the unhealthiest of habits-51 percent regularly eating take away meals, 36 percent frequently buying ready meals and 35 percent drinking more than they should.
"Our research shows that the UK's health is being affected by the credit crunch. As Britons feel increasingly unwell and stressed, action is needed," the Daily Express quoted Mark Jones, head of protection at Friends Provident, as saying.
He added: "People need to make more effort to protect and care for themselves, otherwise National Sickie Day could be the start of a long-term national health issue."