Does anyone else experience vertigo after a cruise...

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Ft. Lauderdale, FL
285 Posts
Joined Jan 2004
..or am I the only one. My husband says I am crazy and I am just sad because the cruise is over, but I feel like I am rocking back and forth. I don't recall feeling like this last year, but we had a few days in a hotel afterwards and a few drinks by the pool probably cured it. This is driving me crazy!

Jenn and Mitch and Marshall
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Boca Raton, Florida
3,171 Posts
Joined Nov 2001
I rock back and forth for at least a week after the cruise! You're not the only one!

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San Antonio, TX
8,791 Posts
Joined Feb 2004
Actually you're not crazy but it is all in your head. More correctly it's due to your vestibular labyrinth which is part of your inner ear. During a cruise your inner ear adjusts to the rocking and rolling of the ship. It's kind of like a computer in that it gets "programmed" to deal with the movement. What you're experiencing is once you're off the ship your inner ear needs to reprogram itself and for some folks it takes longer than others.

Until Galaxy

218 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
The Medical term for this condition is "Debarque Syndrome" as in de-bark. A friend of ours could not seem to shake the dizziness (Lasted months), ended up in physical therapy and was advised not to cruise again as she is now more suseptable to having a reoccurance.
Concord, NC
1,518 Posts
Joined Apr 2002
I, unfortunately, experience it too. I keep side stepping for a week or so. My husband doesn't have this problem. But, it sure won't keep me from cruising again- NO WAY!!!

Sovereign 6/04
Sensation 2003
Paradise 2002
Fascination 2001
Fantasy 1998
137 Posts
Joined Jun 2000
If it was a rocky cruise I always have a good case of "land legs" (aka opposite of "sea legs") when I get back. I'll be sitting at my computer at work and sudddenly fell like I'm falling forward. Goes away with time, and I actually kinda like the sensation, usually reminds of the great trip I was just on.
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1,880 Posts
Joined Dec 2000
After our many sailings, yes, I experience a minor dizziness. Not exactly dizziness, but like some sort of a movement motion, if that makes sense. It doesn't bother me, in fact, it kind of keeps me in the moment of remembering the ship!
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Toss away your inhibitions and sail away on the high seas!
obetz oh usa
2,517 Posts
Joined May 2000
I used to get it a lot but hadn`t had it for a few years until this past May. Returned from a 21 day cruise on HAL and really suffered for a while after de barking. My Dr. seemed to think I`d probably picked up an inner ear virus from swimming, but I`m not so sure......jean
2 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Here's our recipe:

OTC Claritin once a day
Nasonex Nasal spray twice a day
Wash your hands every two hours (always a good idea on ship)
Drink plenty of water
Time Release Sudafed once a day
5 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
There is a rare syndrome that is becoming more common as cruising increases. A person takes month or year to get their "sea legs" back after a cruise, boat ride, or even an airplane trip. Many of us have had this syndrome for years after taking a cruise. If you feel a rocking, swaying, or bobbing motion, imbalance, and fatigue and have difficulty concentrating every day, all day, you probably have this. For a select few after being on a boat, plane or in car this feeling gets longer every time. We are not crazy or making this up it is a documented vestibular syndrome. It is generally thought to be an inability of

the brain to re adjust to land.

This is called Mal de Debarquement Syndrome (MdDs). If you need information email me or contact or type in Mal de Debarquement into Google. A lot of people feel like they are going crazy when the rocking doesn't stop for weeks or months and this actual effects your ability to think and speak for most people, in some degree. We are trying to increase awareness of this syndrome and let people know what they have. I have had this for over two years after a cruise. I have had other shorter episodes after boat rides and cruises.

It is true that other types of vertigo are similar to this syndrome, but many doctors have never heard of this. Most of the people in our support group (yahoo) self-diagnosed and had to print out Medical articles (Dr. Timothy Hain) to take to our own doctors. I am just trying to get the word out that there is such a syndrome for the people who are struggling with this. I had this after my first cruise for 1.5 years; it went away in one day. I went on a 2nd cruise 6 months later and now have had it 24/7, for 2 years and 4 months, not fun. We have over 100 people in our support group and some have had it over 14 years. They cannot work or function normally. Some drugs are helpful for different people. But it helps to get ideas on treatments and coping skills.

Here's some web sites:

We have a great support group on Yahoo:

Good luck to all that have this.