• Centers of Excellence align under Defense Health Agency
    U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Miguel Lara III/Released

    The Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE) began realignment under the Defense Health Agency Oct. 1 as part of the ongoing Military Health System transformation. The change is one example of the progress DHA is making to meet the current health care needs of the military community.

    “This is a positive thing,” said Dr. Richard Stoltz, acting DCoE director. “We are consolidating our efforts and nesting our expertise to manage programs, develop resources, and execute research more effectively. This effort is a great benefit to our warfighters.”

    This realignment supports the DHA quadruple aim – the agency’s overall effort to provide better health, better care, lower costs, and improved military readiness

  • Embrace Mindfulness: These 5 Tips Can Help You Get Started
    DoD photo by Cpl. Jason Jimenez

    If you are part of a military family, taking time for yourself, both physically and mentally, is important.  Mindfulness meditation practices reduce stress, boost resilience and promote overall better health. If the thought of trying to fit something new into your daily routine seems overwhelming, these five tips may help:

    1. Start small: Start with five minutes and gradually increase the length of time as you feel more comfortable.
    2. Download an app: You don’t have to figure out how to meditate on your own. Many people find a guided mindfulness meditation practice helpful. The Mindfulness Coach mobile app is free and offers tips to take with you on the go.
  • Depression Awareness: If Treatment isn’t Working, Tell Your Provider
    Graphic courtesy of Defense Health Agency

    Depression affects millions of people every year. Most people diagnosed  with depression recover with proper therapy and medication. However, if patients don’t improve, they should speak with a health care provider about another diagnosis. Symptoms of depression vary from person to person and often overlap with other health conditions.

    Seek Help from an Expert

    Occasional sadness is normal, but if you experience these feelings for a prolonged period of time, something else may be going on. Depression can affect your thoughts, mood and daily life. Even mild depression can become more serious if left untreated.

  • 5 Tips to Make Healthy Habits Last
    Habit is greater than reason - George Santayana
    Graphic by Defense Health Agency

    Good habits provide a foundation for positive improvements in your life.  However, forming new habits can be challenging. They take time and practice to form.

    “A habit is something we do that becomes automatic because we did it many times under the same circumstances,” said Tiffany Milligan, a health psychologist at the Psychological Health Center of Excellence (PHCoE).

    We practice good habits every day because of repeated, consistent action with specific context.  Context is anything that helps you remember the change you want to make and increases the odds you will do it repeatedly. Once behavior is automatic, it becomes easier to maintain.

  • Beat Depression: Learn Differences for Men, Women
    Graphic by Sidney R. Hinds III, Defense Health Agency

    Awareness is always important for prevention. Knowing the signs and symptoms of depression will make it easier to know when to find help for yourself or for someone you know.

    Depression doesn’t always affect people the same way. Men can experience depression differently than women. The infographic below uses data from  2013 to 2015 to show how depression affects men in the United States.


  • Beat Depression: How to Support Women You Know
    Photo by 2nd Lt. Brian R Ballou

    Depression does not discriminate. It affects people of all ethnicities, economic backgrounds and ages. However, biological, social and gender differences -- and the experiences, stressors and expectations that surround them -- put women at greater risk for depression.

    How to Support Her

    By learning how to offer support and understanding, you can help your loved one access resources for coping with and overcoming depression.