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Ask The Doc

Welcome to "Ask the Doc", the Military Health System's own health care advice column. Here, you'll find answers to questions on an array of subjects and concerns from military doctors, nurses, specialists and personnel who know them best.

Explore our past health topics below and bookmark this page so you can follow our column each month! 

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If you have an idea for a future Ask the Doc column or have specific health care questions you want to ask our experts, send us an email message then check back to see when your topic is featured.

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Welcome to Ask the Doc

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A ‘holistic framework’ for Total Force Fitness through 2021

Article
2/8/2021
Three military personnel, dress in gym gear, exercising with medicine balls.

Total Force Fitness is being re-introduced in 2021 by all branches of the military, to include an emphasis on holistic training that goes far beyond physical fitness.

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Total Force Fitness

Sleep and TBI

Video
2/8/2021
DHA Seal

Sleep disturbances are common for service members and veterans following a mild TBI, also known as concussion.

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | TBI Educators | Patient and Family Resources | Provider Resources | Traumatic Brain Injury | Brain Injury Awareness Toolkit | Brain Injury Awareness Toolkit | Total Force Fitness

USU launches into 2021 with Team Wellness Challenge

Article
2/2/2021
Four women, wearing masks, holding onto a simulated brain

Every New Year brings resolutions to change or improve our health, fitness, attitudes, or habits.

Recommended Content:

Total Force Fitness | Heart Health Toolkit | Heart Health Toolkit

COVID-19 presents challenges to heart health, physical fitness

Article
2/1/2021
Four military personnel, wearing masks, running on a track

Because of COVID-19 shutdowns, the overall health of both military personnel and beneficiaries has taken a hit over the last year.

Recommended Content:

Heart Health Toolkit | Heart Health Toolkit | Heart Health Toolkit | Coronavirus | Total Force Fitness | Physical Fitness | Heart Health

February 2021 Toolkit

Publication
1/29/2021

Every February is Heart Health Month to raise awareness of heart disease and promote healthy prevention strategies. A healthy heart is vital to overall wellness, and critical to readiness and optimizing performance. Viewing Heart Health through the lens of two Total Force Fitness domains, Physical Fitness and Spiritual and Ideological Fitness, the MHS is taking a holistic approach to the heart this February, to understand how the body and soul impact heart health, and vice versa. The toolkit also contains information on Winter Safety and how extreme cold weather can affect your heart. It also has graphics and messages you can use for holidays and observances during February, notably Black History Month.

Recommended Content:

Heart Health Toolkit | Total Force Fitness

TFF: A holistic approach to health and performance

Article
1/29/2021
Silhouette of man climbing a hill

Total Force Fitness encourages Service Members to look beyond traditional fitness approaches to boost their performance.

Recommended Content:

Total Force Fitness | Physical Fitness

Religious support team deploys to help frontline healthcare workers

Article
1/28/2021
Two military personnel, wearing masks, standing against a wall

Military chaplains and religious affairs specialist deploy to support our military medical providers responding working on the frontlines in response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Recommended Content:

Spiritual Fitness | Total Force Fitness | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

Social fitness can impact overall health and readiness

Article
1/28/2021
Five Cyclists riding on the road

Social fitness, one of the total Force Fitness framework’s eight domains, is an important element to holistic health.

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Total Force Fitness | Social Fitness

Ask the Doc: Working out in a Winter Wonderland

Article
1/20/2021
A Soldier assigned to 10th Combat Aviation Brigade spends part of his lunch break getting a quick workout on the ice. So far, 2021 has seen the type of North Country winter weather that is making the Fort Drum ice rink a hot spot for outdoor recreation. Since the rink opened on Jan. 25, it has seen more activity in the first 10 days than all of last season with nearly 800 skaters in attendance. (Photo by Mike Strasser, Fort Drum Garrison Public Affairs)

Dear Doc: Although my gym has opened back up, I’m still a little hesitant to return because of the recent spikes in COVID cases in my area. I’ve been getting creative with my home workouts, and I’d really like to be outside more, but it’s so cold! I want to bundle up, but I don’t want to overdo it and get overheated. Do you have any recommendations for dressing for outdoor workouts in the winter? –Working Out in a Winter Wonderland

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Physical Fitness | Winter Safety | Ask The Doc

DOD Launches “My MilLife Guide” Text Message Program to Boost Wellness

Article
1/11/2021
The new My MilLife Guide program supports the wellness of the military community.

DoD has launched My MilLife Guide, a new program that sends text messages designed to help the military community boost overall wellness while navigating stresses related to COVID-19.

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Coronavirus | Public Health | Total Force Fitness | Health Readiness

Decreasing cervical cancer – one HPV vaccine at a time

Article
1/7/2021
Image of medical personnel showing report to soldier. Click to open a larger version of the image.

Early detection and prevention methods are key to help women fight and prevent this form of cancer.

Recommended Content:

Total Force Fitness Toolkit | Women's Health | Total Force Fitness | Total Force Fitness Toolkit

8 Easy New Year’s Resolution Ideas for a Healthy Mind, Body, and Spirit

Article
1/4/2021
Colorful image with the number 8 and text saying "New Years Resolution: Ideas for a Healthy Mind, Body and Spirit."

Are you trying to get motivated to stick to a New Year’s Resolution? New Year’s is a perfect opportunity to catch up on things that you have been putting off. Set simple achievable goals for success.

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Total Force Fitness

COVID-19: Lifestyle Tips to Stay Healthy

Article
5/22/2020
A collage of four pictures of people exercising, sleeping and eating healthy food. Click to open a larger version of the image.

As we move toward a third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, the virus has changed many of our daily routines in ways no one anticipated and that have become the new normal.

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Coronavirus | Health Readiness | Total Force Fitness

Military chaplains emphasize spiritual health during COVID-19 pandemic

Article
5/19/2020
Soldier in front of military sculpture

In a time of great fear, spiritual health remains an important domain of Total Force Fitness.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Psychological Fitness | Total Force Fitness

Experts dish out 9 tips for heart health

Article
2/28/2020
Naturally occurring phytochemicals in plants provide color, aroma, and flavor to fruits and vegetables. Different colors provide different nutrients, so eating a range of colors is essential for heart health. (U.S. Air Force illustration by Airman 1st Class Jennifer Gonzales)

Earlier this month, the MHS showed why heart health is important; Here is how you look out for yours

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Heart Health | Total Force Fitness
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