Every day women make significant contributions to the missions of today's military forces. Female Soldiers make up 14 to 15 percent of the Active Duty Army supporting nearly every Area of Concentration and Military Occupational Specialty. Just as the Army has always championed health promotion and prevention efforts for its male Soldiers, so it must also champion the unique healthcare situations and considerations necessary to maintain the health and viability of its female Soldiers. When female Soldiers deploy to combat areas, they need to be prepared to maintain their optimal physical, emotional, and spiritual health in ways that may differ from their male counterparts.
The responsibility for female readiness ultimately falls to the female Soldiers themselves. However, this technical guide and the resources referenced within provide strategies to effectively ensure female Soldier readiness with the least amount of impact on the day-to-day mission of the unit and to help female Soldiers stay healthy before, during, and after deployment. The guide addresses areas such as pregnancy profiles, exercise during pregnancy, field needs of female Soldiers, and preventive health measures for the barracks environment. The target audience includes female Soldiers, leaders of female Soldiers, and healthcare providers (HCPs) of female Soldiers.
Female Soldiers are encouraged to include the considerations found in the guide in their planning for field exercises and deployments. The goal is to have positive duty assignments, without the problems that frequently typify field and deployment assignments, and be prepared to deal with the unique impact of the experience when they return from deployment.
Every military leader is a manager of time, resources, and people. Effective military leadership demands the maximum use of each of these elements. The goal of this technical guide is to enable leaders to maximize the potential of the female Soldier. Specific Leader Tips are found throughout the guide to give additional recommendations for leaders.
HCPs are frequently requested to give guidance and recommendations related to female Soldier health issues. This technical guide provides references to assist them in this role.
Chapter 1 - FEMALE SOLDIERS IN THE FIELD * Section I. General Hygiene * Section II. Packing List Additions * Section III. Urinary Tract Diseases * Section IV. Pre-deployment Education * Section V. Nutrition Basics * Section VI. Weight Management Awareness * Section VII. Oral Health in the Field/Dental Fads * Section VIII. Non-pregnancy Restrictions * Section IX. Environmental Factors * Chapter 2 - REPRODUCTIVE HAZARDS, PREGNANCY, AND PARENTING * Section I. Reproductive Hazards * Section II. Issues to Consider Prior to Deployment * Section III. Pregnancy Counseling * Section IV. Pregnancy and Postpartum Profiles * Section V. Exercise During Pregnancy and the Postpartum Period * Section VI. Oral Health During Pregnancy * Section VII. The Single Pregnant Soldier * Section VIII. Pregnancy and the Army Weight Control Program * Section IX. Postpartum Duty * Section X. Psychological Effects of Pregnancy and the Postpartum Period * Section XI. Breastfeeding Section XII. Menopause Considerations * Chapter 3 - MISSION IMPACTORS * Section I. Menstruation, Contraception, and Unintended Pregnancies * Section II. Sexually Transmitted Diseases * Section III. Clinical Preventive Services * Section IV. Sexual Assault * Section V. Musculoskeletal Injury * Chapter 4 - TOOLS AND STRATEGIES * Section I. In-processing Education * Section II. Support/Information Network * Section III. Common Military Training