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Six Health Tips for Veterans

Veterans sacrifice everything to serve and protect our country. However, while war veterans fight for the country for several years, unfortunately, war comes with its own repercussions. For instance, exposure to gunpowder, harsh weather, asbestos, etc., can harm the mind and body. So if you are a veteran who dreams of living a healthy, thriving life after your service, remember that some health conditions can significantly affect your mental and physical health along with your lifestyle.

Not to mention, anxiety and depression are some bizarre health problems commonly endured by veterans, let alone chronic illnesses. But thankfully, you can adapt some ways through which you can easily avoid or cope with these health issues and enjoy a healthy life after service.

And to help you with that, here are the six things you can do today to feel better in the long run.

Keep a Check on Vaccines

The VA or The Department of Veterans Affairs endorses that all veterans must receive certain vaccinations to avoid future health problems. These include vaccination for influenza as well as the pneumococcal vaccine. These vaccines help protect against various severe and even deadly diseases. Thus, they play an important role in providing preventive care to veterans.

Besides vaccines, you should also get other routine health screenings done. These include screenings for cholesterol, colon cancer, blood pressure, and more. You can always talk to your healthcare professional to ask about the right screenings.

Make Use of Available Resources

Seek assistance from different veterans’ services like the Mesothelioma Veterans Center, built explicitly for veterans suffering from malignant mesothelioma or cancer due to asbestos exposure.

In addition, several online forums and support groups are dedicated to veterans’ health and wellness

, which can provide information about veteran benefits, your next course of action, and your condition.

Indulge in Routine Exercise

It is a well-known fact that regular physical activity is the best way to stay healthy and happy. Regular exercising keeps you energized and makes you less likely to suffer from minute illnesses or even chronic diseases.

Thus, being a veteran, you need to stay engaged in routine exercise or some physical activity you enjoy doing. The habit will reward you with a sound body and mind. Jogging, walking, swimming, and running are some of the most easily adaptable physical activities that can help your body stay working for a long time while boosting endorphins.

It would also help build stronger bones, immune systems, muscles, and faster metabolism. Moreover, if you like hitting the gym, this can also be your go-to activity to ensure healthy living. With that, it is also important to take a healthy diet. Eating healthy food goes a long way toward living a happy and wholesome lifestyle.

Being a veteran who has served in the military for years, you may realize the significance of a nutrient-rich diet; however, after retirement, ensuring a healthy diet and keeping tabs on it becomes even more important.

Seek Prompt Medical Attention

One of the biggest mistakes made by veterans is that they don’t get immediate medical attention when starting to feel sick. Whereas, by the time you start experiencing any of the illness’s symptoms, you should seek medical attention at the earliest possible.

Since veterans are more likely to fall sick and suffer illnesses due to their earlier lifestyle at service, it is wise to consult a professional healthcare provider. These professionals can diagnose the issue early and accurately. In addition, their treatment recommendations will help you recover faster and decrease the underlying risk of any further complications commonly faced by patients who fail to get timely medical attention.

Moreover, you must take the prescribed medication as instructed by your provider to avoid delaying the treatment of illnesses that require immediate attention—within the first few days of symptoms like influenza.

Work Your Mind & Body

Keeping yourself physically and mentally fit doesn’t mean hours of exercise only. Instead, you should prepare your mind and body to overcome any situation that comes your way. Some medical experts believe indulging in yoga and Tai Chi is an excellent way to work your mind and body simultaneously.

Daily yoga practice helps strengthen you mentally and physically. It induces relaxation and calm sensations that instantly let you manage anxiety and stress. Consequently, a calm mindset allows you to develop better work and personal relationships. Whether in your personal life or work, this relaxed attitude can help you improve relationships.

Similarly, Tai Chi is a low-intensity exercise perfect for retired war veterans. It involves slow body movements and deep breathing that keep you fit for longer. Moreover, it ensures minimal stress on your joints and bones, ensuring you don’t face any injuries. 

Some notable benefits of Tai Chi include improved mood, decreased anxiety and stress, increased stamina and energy, along with improved flexibility, balance, and agility.

Stay Close to Your Support Network

Being human beings, we all need human connection and contact. It is a common fact that people who enjoy supportive, healthy relationships with their friends, family, colleagues, and partners stay healthier and happier and live longer.

Alternatively, people who prefer living in isolation and avoid spending quality time within their social network often face higher chances of suffering from stress, depression, insomnia, anxiety, and even a 50% higher risk of premature death.

Therefore, ensure you have a support network you can reach out to. This would help foster healthy connections with individuals around you.

This is particularly important for veterans as they experience higher rates of depression and PTSD. And when these individuals don’t ask for help or stay close to a support network, unfortunately, this leads to high rates of substance abuse, domestic violence, and even suicide.

Conclusion

You may find military service tough, but the responsibility to keep yourself fit even after service is no less than a challenge. However, fortunately, you can make sure to live a healthy life with just a little effort in the right direction.

There are many ways veterans can help themselves to stay healthy. So, if you have dreamt of spending a healthy lifestyle after service, you must start working on the above-discussed tips from today. Routine exercise, checking vaccines, managing stress, regular screening, and support group are just some ways to stay fit in the long run. But, while you may get the assistance of any veteran services out there, the initial responsibility lies with you.

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