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How to be aware of scurvy on long cruise jobs

On Behalf of | Feb 28, 2022 | Cruise Ship Injuries

For cruise ship workers who are based in New York, long shifts at sea are a basic part of the job. There are different workplace risks associated with these voyages, but one of the more insidious ones is managing the risk of scurvy.

Scurvy on cruises

The reason that people contract scurvy is a lack of vitamin C. People think of it as an illness that affected the explorers of the 18th century who traveled on wooden boats, but anyone who spends a lot of time without getting vitamin C is at risk. Humans can’t create vitamin C for themselves. It can only come from citrus and similar sources. When people work at sea, they lose access to fresh food for days or weeks at a time depending on the trip.

Cruise ship workers do not always get the best treatment. They certainly do not get the same level of quality food that the guests on the cruise do. Because they are away from land for so long and have a limited selection of meals, it is harder for cruise ship workers to ensure they have enough vitamin C than workers on land. As a result, if their environment does not have enough citrus or other foods rich in vitamin C, it may be necessary for cruise workers to bring supplements with them to fend off scurvy and its symptoms. Scurvy can be extremely dangerous and lead to permanent damage to the mouth and teeth, which can make you vulnerable to more infections in the future.

Scurvy is far from a thing of the past. It poses a significant health risk to cruise workers.