Army Regulations for Pregnant Soldiers

Army Regulations for Pregnant Soldiers

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Getting pregnant while on active duty in the U.S. Army does not mean that you must give up your military career. The army makes modifications to pregnant soldiers duties, schedules and physical-fitness requirements. AR 40-501, the army pregnancy regulation, lets you continue your service during and after your pregnancy. This regulation also has duty limitations that ensure your health and safety along with the health of your unborn baby.

You must see a doctor to confirm your pregnancy. She sends the confirmation to your unit commander and issues a notice of change for your physical profile. The profile also includes your due date and sets your physical profile to T-3. This profile exempts you from normal physical training during your pregnancy, but not all exercise. It also limits your assigned duties. It exempts you from wearing weighted equipment, most immunizations and any duties that expose you to hazardous chemicals and automobile fuel. Your assigned duties cannot require you to climb ladders or use scaffolding. A pregnancy profile also makes you ineligible to serve at overseas locations, except in special circumstances.

The army requires that pregnant soldiers have routine prenatal care. You can choose care from a nurse midwife or physician. She will monitor the progress of your pregnancy and implement additional restrictions during your pregnancy. At 20 weeks, the prenatal care provider will update your pregnancy profile and restrict you from standing for parade longer than five minutes. She will also add exemptions from swimming tests, field duty and weapons training. At this phase of your pregnancy, the unit commander eliminates duty assignments that could cause extreme fatigue and lightheadedness. This includes flight duties unless you submit a request to continue. At 28 weeks, you cannot work more than 40-hours-per-week and must have three-15-minute breaks during an eight-hour shift. Your physician can recommend additional restrictions, as needed, for the duration of your pregnancy. If you experience complications related to your pregnancy, your unit commander and medical provider will decide whether to put you on sick leave.

After your delivery, your physician changes your pregnancy profile to a convalescent profile. The standard length for this profile is 45 days for a pregnancy and delivery with no complications. During this period, you can resume some physical-fitness training, but the army exempts you from normal physical-fitness training and testing for 180 days. You need clearance from your physician to resume the full physical-fitness program in less than 180 days. For the first four months after your delivery, your unit commander cannot assign you to an overseas-duty post that does not allow dependents to accompany the soldier. Assignments to temporary-duty stations are also restricted in the first four months.

Army Regulation 40501 Medical Services Standards of Medical Fitness

Fort Hood Sentinel: Pregnancy, Post-Partum Profiles: Circumstances May Warrant Additional Limitations

Army Public Health Center: Pregnancy

Carol Luther has more than 25 years of business, technology, and freelance writing experience. She has held leadership roles in higher education management, international development, adult education, vocational education, and small business support programs

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Army Tattoo Regulations Are Set To Change And Soldiers ent Happy

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Army Tattoo Regulations Are Set To Change, And Soldiers Arent Happy

A tattoo is seen on the arm of a U.S. Army flight medic from Charlie Co. Sixth Battalion, 101st Airborne Combat Aviation Brigade, Task Force Shadow June 24, 2010 in Kandahar, Afghanistan.Speaking to troops at FOB Gamberi in eastern Afghanistan, Sgt. Maj. of the Army Raymond Chandler announced that strict changes to Army Regulation 670-1 governing the wear and appearance of members of the Armed Services had been approved by the Secretary of the Army and would go into effect immediately upon final signature.

Were just waiting for the secretary to sign, Chandler told the 4th Combat Brigade Team, 10th Mountain Division, as reported by the military newspaperStars and Stripes.

The changes will cover everything from uniform colors, ponytail styles and fingernail length (for females: no fake nails, add-ons, or extensions). But the rule that has gotten the most people up in arms concerns tattoos.

Under the new policy, new recruits will not be allowed to have tattoos that show below the elbows and knees or above the neckline, writes Stars and Stripes reporter Josh Smith. Current soldiers may be grandfathered in, but all soldiers will still be barred from having any tattoos that are racist, sexist or extremist.

Members of the U.S. Armed Forces have been getting tattoos since the first permanent tattoo parlor was established in New York City in 1846 and their commanders have been attempting to regulate the ink with varying degrees of success for nearly as long.

During the World War II Golden Age of patriotic military tats, the Navyissued regulations banning images of naked women, inadvertently starting a trend of sexy nurse tattoos.

During the Vietnam War, Army soldiers began flouting regulations that had kept tattoos largely within the Navy and Marine Corps. By the time the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003, tats on military personnel had not only become commonplace, they had become part of acherishedandfiercely protectedculture, one that the Armycouldnt afford to regulateas it struggled to meet enlistment quotas for two simultaneous wars.

With the drawdown of troops in Afghanistan, and the return to a more peace-time conventional force, the Armys relaxed policy is about to change.

When the announcement came out, the Internet exploded.

I suppose that as soon as the troops stop getting tattoos, and start to learn more about the Afghan culture, the Taliban will have no choice but to surrender, wrote a former platoon leader atThis Aint Hell. Way to focus on whats important, SMA Chandler.

Sgt. Major Chandler defended the decision by arguing that service members with prominent tattoos draw attention to their appearance and away from their achievements, Smith reports. Referring to soldiers with curse words on their necks, Chandler told the soldiers, I question Why there? Are you trying to stand out?

This abhorrence for nonconformity, writesJames Joynerat Defense One, runs deep in Army culture and is intended to get soldiers to project a professional image, a goal which I share, he admits.

But theres a fine line, he continues, between enforcing professionalism and pushing one generations pet peeves on another.

Like many NCOs of his generation, my father, who retired from the Army after twenty years as a first sergeant, had a tattoo on his forearm. He got it as a young trooper in Vietnam and managed to be a professional soldier another seventeen years, earning several promotions and commendation medals. Whats cool in one generation is almost by definition uncool the next, so it would have been unthinkable for either SMA Chandler or myself to get one. Style is cyclical, however, and tats are back.

While I share Chandlers visceral reaction to extreme tattoos and unusual hair coloring, these new regulations are wrongheaded. Theres simply zero evidence that people sporting them make subpar soldiers or diminish their units esprit de corps.

As with every regulation in the Army, this one is nonnegotiable, so until new changes are made to AR 670-1, new recruits will be tat-free below the knees and elbows.

To commemorate this moment, weve rounded up a few examples of service member ink through the ages.

Second World War veteran Fred Duffield, 87, (who was a paramedic in the 12th Yorkshire Paratrooper Regiment in the Ardennes) sits aboard the cross channel ferry leaving Portsmouth, England for Caen, France on June 4, 2013 in the English Channel. Across Normandy several hundred of the surviving veterans of the Normandy campaign are gathering to commemorate the 69th anniversary of the D-Day landings which eventually led to the Allied liberation of France in 1944.Matt Cardy/Getty Images

Spc. Ian Laskey, 25, of Deerborn Heights, Mich., with the U.S. Armys Alpha Company 2nd Battalion 27th Infantry Regiment based in Hawaii, shows his tattoo at Combat Outpost Pirtle King in Kunar province, Afghanistan. These are the footprints of my sons, I was deployed and only got to see them for 14 days after they were born. I got the tattoos to keep them with me and have them in my heart. Its my motivation.Associated Press

Pearl Harbor survivor, Thomas Michenovich, shows off his wartime tattoos.Marco Garcia/Getty Images

Former Army Staff Sgt. Jesse Belyeu, 51, a veteran of the Green Berets, displays his tattoo reading To hell and back, 66-69, Vietnam, outside the Midnight Mission in downtown Los Angeles on Tuesday, Nov. 11, 1997. Belyeu, who is homeless and suffers from leukemia, said the horrors of his special operations job remain with him and have landed him in mental hospitals several times.Associated Press

Spc. Jeremiah Butts of Magna, Utah, of the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, shows off a tattoo that he got for his wife as he stands in the Badula Qulp area, west of Lashkar Gah in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2010.Associated Press