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Vision and Hearing Loss Prevention

Hearing and vision are critical senses.  Service members must be able to see, hear, and communicate in order to achieve their mission safely and effectively, engage with their families, and connect with their communities.

Military personnel are routinely exposed to sensory hazards in combat, training, and by exposure to potentially hazardous conditions on and off duty. Hearing and vision injuries are detrimental to force readiness, attrition, retention, and replacement. Degraded hearing or vision can impact your mission fitness, and service members should treat their eye and ear health like any other physical tool they develop and protect.

We're committed to protecting the vision and hearing health of our service members and veterans, giving them the best opportunity to maintain fitness for duty and the quality of life they deserve!

Protect Your Hearing

It's a noisy world and protecting your hearing is essential, not only for your life in the military but for your relationships in your personal life as well. Check out these links from the DOD's Hearing Center of Excellence to understand hearing loss and how you can prevent it:

Protect Your Vision

There are nearly 2,000 eye injuries occurring in the U.S. each day and almost all of these injuries can be prevented. Check out these links from the DOD's Vision Center of Excellence to understand eye injuries and how you can prevent them:

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Military Laser Eye Surgery: Enhancing Vision Readiness

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7/12/2021
Military health personnel looking at wavescan results

Enhancing vision readiness through laser eye surgery is now available at 26 military medical treatment facilities.

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Ask the Doc: Eye Need Answers

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7/8/2021
Senior Airman Mitchel Delfosse, 22nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron electrical environmental system journeyman, attends an eye exam appointment Jan. 30, 2020, at McConnell Air Force Base, Kansas. Maj. (Dr.) Gerardo Robles-Morales, 22nd Operational Medical Readiness Squadron optometry flight commander, recommends an eye exam a minimum of every two years to ensure overall eye health and correct vision. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alexi Bosarge)

Dear Doc: I consider myself pretty lucky. I'm in my late 20s and I've never had any eye problems to speak of. I have 20/20 vision and I've never worn glasses. But...the Air Force tells me to protect my eyes and I'm not exactly sure what that means. Do you know anyone who can give me some solid advice on the best options for eye protection? What should I be wearing at work or on the flight line? What should I be wearing out in the sun? I know I have a lot of questions, but I just want to protect myself as best as possible. Thanks in advance, Doc! -Eye Need Answers

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Mobile hearing test system enables quicker diagnosis, treatment

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7/8/2021
Military personnel during a hearing test

Portable device can detect hearing loss in remote areas, clinic settings and beyond.

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Vision Care Service Coordinators Support Ocular Care Management

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6/24/2021
Military health personnel giving an eye appointment

Vision care service coordinators support eye injury and vision loss patient recovery.

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Patients Contribute to Shape Future Hearing Loss Treatment

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6/21/2021
Barbara Kelly from the Hearing Loss Association of America hosting a meeting

Patient-focused meeting could lead to improved hearing loss therapies

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Cataracts Concern Battle Fighters, the Aging

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6/21/2021
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Traumatic cataracts can occur during battlefield injuries, but they are largely avoidable in non-combat situations.

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MHS and MOS Town Hall: "To Your Health"

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6/8/2021
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MHS and Military OneSource: To Your Health: A Discussion with experts from the Hearing Center of Excellence and the Vision Center of Excellence

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Researchers find key senses impact readiness, survival

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6/8/2021
Military personnel in driver and casualty evacuation training

Sound localization is a critical component of situational awareness, or to put it in layman’s terms, knowing what is going on around you

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How vision and hearing contribute to service members’ readiness

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5/26/2021
Military personnel preparing for night vision training

Hearing and sight are the two dominant human senses, both primordial for military service members’ readiness, health, and mission success.

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Visual dysfunctions common in even mild TBI patients

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3/30/2021
Military health personnel examining a picture of an eye

Vision Center of Excellence ocular medical specialists discuss visual dysfunctions resulting from TBI.

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Strategies for hearing loss prevention help service members stay ready

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3/3/2021
An infographic with the words "World Hearing Day" at the top, images of people using their hears to listen, and "educate, protect, monitor" at the bottom

The Defense Health Agency is one of many healthcare entities celebrating World Hearing Day on March 3.

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VCE examines low vision with detection and care

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2/18/2021
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Dr. David Eliason, of the Vision Center of Excellence, says low vision awareness is about prevention, detection, and continuing treatment.

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