Forcing a smile at work linked to heavy drinking: study

4/13/2019 8:30 PM   

Employees who work in the public eye who force themselves to smile for customers or hide feelings of annoyance may be susceptible to heavy drinking after hours, according to a new study.

Researchers at Penn State and the University of Buffalo studied the drinking habits of employees who work in the public view. Some of the jobs studied include nurses, teachers or food service employees.

The study found a link between those who fake positive emotions or suppressĀ feelingsĀ like eye rolling with heavier drinking after their shifts ended.

Alicia Grandey, professor of psychology at Penn State, believes these type of jobs should limit the need for employees to smile for the customer, according to the study.

"Faking and suppressing emotions with customers was related to drinking beyond the stress of the job or feeling negatively," said Grandey. "It wasn't just feeling badly that makes them reach for a drink. Instead, the more they have to control negative emotions at work, the less they are able to control their alcohol intake after work."

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