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When we have been sick on a cruise - what about you?


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All my cruise's, I have never gotten ill. Always take precautions, even before the covid. Only on my last cruise, did I have an incident. Returned to the ship after a day on the island. That evening the nose went crazy. Went through a few boxes of Kleenex. I stay in my room just in case. Turned out, there was something on that island, that did not agree with me, allergy wise. They did a lot of burning on that island. The next day I was fine. Which was good. That was our last stop before heading home. I was not looking forward, to staying in my cabin, for that many sea days.

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Many respiratory ailments are spread via the air (i.e. sneezes, coughs, etc) so washing hands is not good enough.  DW used to get more then her share of URIs on cruises (we cruise over 70 days a year).  So, we finally took some basic precautions.  We tried to avoid elevators as much as possible (they are enclosed chambers where respiratory bugs quickly spread) and did our best to distance ourselves from other passengers who were coughing/sneezing.   We quickly realized that she seldom got any more URIs ("cabin cough is a popular term on ships") and also noticed that we got a lot fewer common colds.  

 

Hank

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We use to get sick, towards end of cruise or afterwards.  We have over 60 cruises, make that point, only to say, some time ago, may be after we had been on 20-30 cruises, I recall we went to the medical facility on board because my husband had been bitten by some sort of bug while we were visiting St Thomas.  While in the medical facility I noticed so many people coming in and out with "colds".  I start to think why, so many with colds?  Decided maybe the air conditioning may be a factor.  From that point I started setting the temperature in our cabin on the lowest setting for "heat" when we went to bed, so we were not sleeping under cool air all night from the air conditioning unit right above the bed.    Doing so reduced the times we got sick every since about 90%.  

 

I did other things too but do believe the air conditioning was a factor.  We do not have air conditioning where we live near San Francisco.  

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We are also a couple that has never been sick while on a cruise or shortly after. I guess both of us would be considered susceptible as I am diabetic and wife has COPD. And yes, we will continue to cruise even in todays environment. 

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I have gotten sick during and just after a cruise several times.  The worst was a lingering cough after a TA from FL to Barcelona that began around the 8th day of the sailing and lasted several months despite doctor's interventions.

 

I was extremely happy I didn't catch anything on my last cruise earlier this year in mid February!

 

I don't recall getting sick during any land vacations, which usually involved longer flights.  I used to split up my vacations between land and sea, roughly equal amounts of each per year.

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I've concluded that some people are just susceptible because of their immune system or an upper respiratory problem. My DH who has COPD almost always suffers while on cruises while I have only caught one small cold. I'm perhaps just slightly more vigilant than he is about not touching elevator buttons and trying never to touch food with my bare hands, but he follows all sensible protocols. I'll admit to being obsessive and haven't been on an antibiotic for years.

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On 8/31/2020 at 10:54 PM, Love.II.Cruise said:

Our average cruise length is 14 nights.  A couple months ago, on a walk, my husband and I talked about how often we get sick with a "respiratory" illness on a cruise.  It's A LOT.  It was hard for us to even find a cruise where we didn't remember either of us getting sick on the cruise, shortly near the end, or quickly thereafter.  

 

This probably will lead into how sanitary we are.  We wash our hands all the time before meals (not just use sanitizer before entry to a restaurant).  Even when we leave a public restroom, we never touch the handle with our clean hands (use towel).  We use our knuckles for elevator buttons.  We avoid touching handrails in hallways and stairways (our preferred mode of travel before elevators - just for extra exercise. 🙂).  

 

I do think we are just more highly susceptible to respiratory illness.  Our last cruise was last November and I kid you not, at one point it seemed like half the passengers and crew were sick.  We heard so much coughing.  That was a transatlantic cruise.  I do wonder if more people get sick on a long cruise when there are more sea days.  

 

So my question to you - how often do you get a respiratory illness on a cruise?  Do you think more people get sick on a cruise of longer length (14 days+)?  Do you think cruise ship size matters?  Do you think the number of sea days matter?  I encourage others to throw out other questions on this topic.  

Do you generally fly to port?  If so, this (and not the cruise ship)  may be the source of your illness. (I find I am sick with respiratory symptoms to some degree after almost every flight I take.)

 

Edited by simplelife
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I have never gotten sick on a cruise. I've traveled with a few people who've gotten GI illnesses on a cruise, but I can't think of a time anyone I've cruised with has ever gotten a respiratory illness.

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On 9/7/2020 at 4:57 PM, simplelife said:

Do you generally fly to port?  If so, this (and not the cruise ship)  may be the source of your illness. (I find I am sick with respiratory symptoms to some degree after almost every flight I take.)

 

We always fly to a port for our cruises.  But I used to fly all the time for work and didn't get ill from those flights.  Some were across county, mostly just half the country.  

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On 9/7/2020 at 1:57 PM, simplelife said:

Do you generally fly to port?  If so, this (and not the cruise ship)  may be the source of your illness. (I find I am sick with respiratory symptoms to some degree after almost every flight I take.)

 

 

That used to happen to me routinely.  Take a flight then spend a week shaking a head cold or whatever you call it.  Then I followed some advice to drink nothing but water and try to move around a little (while on the flight of course).  Seems to simple, but that did the trick for me.  

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36 minutes ago, KnowTheScore said:

Had plenty of respiratory illnesses on or shortly after cruises.  Par for the course imho.  My health is thankfully strong enough to withstand them as I prioritise my health, eat good foods, reject bad foods that are loaded with sugar and research extensively medical treatments and vaccines and stay well away from them.

 

I firmly believe the transmission rates on-board are high because the demographic is generally an old one and most of those people are more susceptible to these bugs and viruses and bring them on-board and spread them around and that's been going on for years. 

 

I also firmly believe most of these people are trotting off for their Flu shots every year out of fear and that this is slowly degrading their health.  Articles such as this one give me cause for caution in respect of Flu shots:

Getting a flu shot every year? More may not be better

https://www.statnews.com/2015/11/11/flu-shots-reduce-effectiveness/

 

 

 

Getting more vaccinations actually conditions your body to better immunity when exposed to new things. Vaccinations absolutely do not degrade your health. That misinformation has been robustly shot down by professionals and fully reported in peer reviewed top of the line medical journals.

If respiratory infections are routine and par for the course, your health is not that great. We are in our 70s and rarely even have a cold, and never after a flight or cruise.

Getting the flu shot in Oct this year is especially important as it is expected to boost general immunity to slightly influence Covid protection.

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1 hour ago, KnowTheScore said:

Had plenty of respiratory illnesses on or shortly after cruises.  Par for the course imho.  My health is thankfully strong enough to withstand them as I prioritise my health, eat good foods, reject bad foods that are loaded with sugar and research extensively medical treatments and vaccines and stay well away from them.

 

I firmly believe the transmission rates on-board are high because the demographic is generally an old one and most of those people are more susceptible to these bugs and viruses and bring them on-board and spread them around and that's been going on for years. 

 

I also firmly believe most of these people are trotting off for their Flu shots every year out of fear and that this is slowly degrading their health.  Articles such as this one give me cause for caution in respect of Flu shots:

Getting a flu shot every year? More may not be better

https://www.statnews.com/2015/11/11/flu-shots-reduce-effectiveness/

 

 

 

You really  “... research extensively medical treatments and vaccines and stay well away from them.” ?   And have concluded that annual flu shots are not a good idea?

 

I have to ask:  what sources do you research?   Do you consider the CDC, your local public health authorities, or even you own regular licensed physician —- or do you tend to rely on internet or other media “reports”?

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2 hours ago, 2wheelin said:

Getting the flu shot in Oct this year is especially important as it is expected to boost general immunity to slightly influence Covid protection.

And we want to help protect our grands from flu.

 

Very well written reply. Thanks.

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3 hours ago, KnowTheScore said:

Had plenty of respiratory illnesses on or shortly after cruises.

and research extensively medical treatments and vaccines and stay well away from them.

 

I also firmly believe most of these people are trotting off for their Flu shots every year out of fear and that this is slowly degrading their health.  Articles such as this one give me cause for caution in respect of Flu shots:

Getting a flu shot every year? More may not be better

https://www.statnews.com/2015/11/11/flu-shots-reduce-effectiveness/

 

 

 

Your reference was from a paper written in 2015 where children were vaccinated. This is a quote from it:

“It also represents a communications challenge for public health officials who vigorously promote annual vaccination as the most effective way to protect against the flu. Findings that suggest the science is more complicated than initially believed could lead people to assume annual flu shots are detrimental to their health.

That’s not the message researchers such as Belongia want to convey.

“In every scenario, it is better for people to be vaccinated than not vaccinated,” he said. “It would not be, I think, accurate or helpful for people to take away from this ‘Oh, well, I shouldn’t get vaccinated because I got vaccinated in the past and that’s a bad thing.”

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On 9/2/2020 at 9:47 AM, Toofarfromthesea said:

Neither wife nor I have gotten sick.  We take no special precautions.  I attribute this to our 21 and 15 year long, respectively, vaccine teaching in a public school.

 

Bingo!  That would do it!  

 

I used to get the flu every year.  I have not had it now for quite a while since I started getting the flu shots.  

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24 minutes ago, ldubs said:

 

Bingo!  That would do it!  

 

I used to get the flu every year.  I have not had it now for quite a while since I started getting the flu shots.  

I began taking flu shots at age 70.I only had it once prior.However,I have had Pneumonia twice when I was in my 30’s.

 

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On 9/3/2020 at 2:47 AM, Toofarfromthesea said:

Neither wife nor I have gotten sick.  We take no special precautions.  I attribute this to our 21 and 15 year long, respectively, vaccine teaching in a public school.

Nothing boosts your immunity better than teaching in a public school, over 30 years, nothing like it to keep healthy. Lol.

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On 9/16/2020 at 2:10 PM, clo said:

Why would that be?

We mostly cruise in the Caribbean. Going back and forth between the hot outdoors and the cold ship causes me to catch a cold.

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11 minutes ago, cruznjan said:

We mostly cruise in the Caribbean. Going back and forth between the hot outdoors and the cold ship causes me to catch a cold.

Have you talked to your doctor about that? Colds are a flu virus so it seems a bit odd that you get them that way.

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