Impacts of Health Concerns on the Future of Veterans

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By Admin Desk

The number of people willing to join the military and eventually become veterans has highly reduced. The main causes of such reduction are the health and safety concerns facing veterans. Veterans work in different conditions that can be extremely unpredictable and risky. Some of the health conditions they face can leave them unable to work again for the rest of their life. No person wants to be incapacitated forever. Therefore, a lot of people choose other careers with lower risk instead of joining the military.

One main health concern facing veterans is physical injuries. Given the current technological advancements, the weapons used in war zones could have devastating impacts on a person’s health. Some of them produce toxic gases, leading to death or the development of fatal health conditions. An example is where a service member is exposed to asbestos.

When inhaled, the fibers of the material lead to the development of asbestosis or mesothelioma. The worst part of this cancer is that it takes a long for the symptoms to manifest. When they manifest, the person might not know what they are suffering from. Some people are known to take painkillers for reducing chest pain instead of being screened to find out the root cause of the pain. The mesothelioma survival rates are very low, unfortunately, for workers who were exposed to asbestos or veterans who had exposure. Mesothelioma has no cure, but when detected early, the condition can be managed to improve life.

The veterans are also likely to develop autoimmune diseases, and this results in many people avoiding the career. An autoimmune disease occurs when the body starts to attack its tissues instead of the disease-causing microorganisms. A leading cause of autoimmune diseases is posttraumatic stress. Veterans are exposed to harsh working conditions and intense situations.

For instance, if they go to a war zone, many of them end up with PTSD based on what they saw and experienced. If the stress is not managed, it can disrupt the body’s biological processes. When such processes are disrupted, the chances are high that the body will fight its tissues instead of the foreign microorganisms. In turn, the person can get weak to the extent that they cannot carry out their duties.

Veterans are given regular medical checkups to prevent them from developing health conditions that might affect their working capabilities. However, the health checkups might not always be sufficient to prevent them from contacting various health conditions. Health checkups are important but cannot prevent them from getting injured while working in a hostile environment. This explains why many people are unwilling to join the military. Some of these conditions take longer to heal while others do not.

An example is the low mesothelioma survival rates. No one wishes to work in an environment that will contribute to their death, and therefore, most people prefer other careers that have less risk of exposure to dangerous substances. Actions ought to be taken to reduce the health concerns facing veterans. If fewer veterans get injured or sick and more health and safety concerns came to the forefront, people will be more motivated to join the military.