ill over christmas

Why do people get ill over Christmas and how to avoid it

December 09 2021

The Christmas season comes loaded with many lovely things, including delicious meals, colourful parties, awesome family get-togethers, and more. Sadly though, there’s often a downside to Christmas, with a spike in illnesses often the unexpected gift that visits along with Santa each year.

In this article, we will take a closer look at the main reasons people often fall sick during the Christmas period. This will help us to come up with possible ways to try and prevent these sickness outbreaks.

While it could be daunting to come up with reasons why people typically fall sick around Christmas time, a sure bet would be to carefully consider the prevailing climatic conditions and activity levels during these seasons. Therefore, let us discuss some of the activities that take place during the Christmas period and how they can be possible causes of post-Christmas illnesses.

Staying indoors

During the Christmas holidays, people often tend to spend more time indoors. While this may sound appealing, it comes with some downsides — spending too much time indoors can cut off your body’s supply of healthy gut bacteria. Unfortunately, we cannot help but stay indoors during the Christmas period as for most the weather is cold and wet and the days are shorter. The reduced physical activity can cause some cold and flu viruses to thrive, causing a spike in the occurrence of some fever-type illnesses.

So, is there a way to combat this? The best way to avoid getting ill due to staying indoors is to let in as much fresh air as possible. You could do this by keeping a window or door open to allow for proper ventilation and enhanced air circulation.


Being one of the most popular holidays in the world, it is safe to say that Christmas holidays are pretty busy periods, and as such, they come with a bunch of stress. As expected, stress has a lot of negative effects on our overall well-being. It weakens the immune system, making it hard for your body to fight bacteria.

Stressed people are always susceptible to illnesses, and this is exactly what happens to most people after the overly stressful activities of the Christmas season. These stressors can result in colds and sores as the body becomes easily attacked by bacteria.

It is easy to understand the reasons for the high level of stress during the Christmas period. Many people have a lot of parties to plan, events to attend, family outings, and so much more. Trying to juggle all these activities often stresses the life out of people, making them even more vulnerable to sickness.

Fortunately, this stress can be managed. But how? Well, consider adopting proper time management techniques. With adequate management of your time, you would know when to stop partying and get healthier meals ready, when to go shopping, and when to get some sleep.

Lack of adequate sleep

Despite the various importance of decent sleep, we only get to enjoy a minimal amount of sleep during the Christmas holidays. With the prevalence of parties during Christmas, there is often little time left to enjoy a decent sleep. As expected, this sleep deprivation comes with a load of consequences. For example, it can attack your immune system and negatively affect how your body fights against diseases like the common cold.

But what do we do? Quit the Christmas parties?

Not necessarily so. You can avoid falling ill due to lack of adequate sleep by ensuring that you get a decent amount of sleep each night and rest up whenever you can get in between your busiest days. When you need to stay up late at night, try to get enough sleep during the early morning hours to compensate for the lack of sleep.

Not eating well during the Christmas seasons

How will it sound to say that most people end up suffering from malnutrition during the Christmas period? While this is seemingly unbelievable considering the level of parties, dinners and buffets during these periods, some people resort to skipping meals as a result of being overly busy during these periods. This can easily lead to malnutrition and eventually result in a weakened immune system and high susceptibility to diseases.

To avoid this, ensure you deliberately fill your diet with fruits and vegetables that offer a generous supply of essential vitamins and minerals. Doing so would strengthen your immune system and reduce the occurrence of festive period illnesses to the minimum.

Poor hygiene

This list would not be complete without mentioning your hygiene. It is a well-established fact that diseases come as a result of exposure to certain bacteria. These bacteria thrive well in a dirty environment. Therefore, the onus is on everyone to ensure the maintenance of proper hygiene to curb the spread of disease during the Christmas season.

The sure bet is to adhere to simple hygiene precautions, such as washing hands regularly, covering your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, proper use of disinfectants, and so much more. With proper adherence to these hygiene protocols, you will hopefully not have to battle sicknesses. Overall, we all love our Christmas seasons. A lot of people hold the Christmas celebration as a family ritual. So, the inference is that we cannot discard the Christmas celebration, but we can employ various measures to ensure that you do not have to struggle with illness during or after the Christmas holidays


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