This article is about your eligibility for joining the military if you have bipolar disorder. If you want to serve in the U.S. military, you should know that the United States Department of Defense (DoD) policy on mental health disorders is that you must be free of any type of “mental defect” which would make you ineligible to hold the military rank and military job you desire..
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Can You Join The Military With Bipolar Disorder? – Related Questions
What mental disorders prevent you from joining the military?
The US military does not have a blanket policy on mental health. People who have had a history of drug abuse or have been diagnosed with a personality disorder are usually disqualified. However, there are many people who have mental disorders and still manage to join the military. The Department of Defense voluntary mental health program, called “Healthy Minds,” encourages troops to be mentally aware and make them aware of the correct avenues to seek help..
Can I get a waiver for bipolar disorder?
Bipolar I is just a fancy name for manic depression. For those who suffer with this disease, there is no special waiver for the disorder. The first step in the diagnosis of bipolar disorder is the medical history. The physician will ask the patient to give a detailed history of his family and his own medical history, including any misdiagnoses. The doctor will perform a physical to rule out other causes for the symptoms. This will include blood tests to rule out things like low white blood cell count, alcohol or drug abuse. The doctor will also do brain tests to check for other mental conditions. The next step will be to confirm the diagnosis by the patient’s history, physical and psychological profile. The doctor may also do a sleep study to ensure that there is no other reason for the manic behavior. Only after all this is done, will the diagnosis be confirmed. There are no waivers or exceptions for a diagnosis of bipolar disorder. While people with bipolar disorder may not be able to serve in the military, the disorder itself won’t necessarily prevent them from doing so..
Can you take antidepressants in the military?
The real question is which antidepressants are specifically prescribed for people in the military. The most common ones are SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) but there are others that are used as well..
Does suicidal thoughts disqualify you from the military?
Suicidal thoughts disqualify you from the army. Though the army is known to have a tough mental training and testing, but it doesn’t mean that they are going to consider suicidal thoughts as a criterion to enter the army. The army demands mental stability, not instability. Even if you think that such thoughts are going to be in your past and you will never think about them again, you should still be careful. The army might reject you just because it doesn’t want to take a risk..
Can you drive with bipolar disorder?
Yes, you can drive with bipolar disorder. However, you may have to take extra precautions, depending on your mood swings. For example, if you are experiencing a manic episode, you should not drive. Instead, you should ask someone to drive you around because you’re incapable of thinking clearly instead. On the other hand, if you’re experiencing a depressive episode, you should be aware of driving in bad weather and low visibility. You should be aware of the fact that the medications for bipolar disorder can cause drowsiness, which could lead to an accident. During your manic episodes, you should increase your anti-anxiety medications to avoid getting into a bad situation. However, you should be careful not to over-medicate and avoid driving..
Can you enlist in the military with a mental illness?
Recruiters are authorized to accept a recruit with a mental illness, but they may be hindered when it comes to future assignments. If you speak with a medical professional who works in the military, you will likely hear that the mental and emotional illnesses are taken very seriously in the military. While having a mental illness alone is not going to get in the way of you being accepted into the military, it could keep you from being able to complete certain assignments. Depending on the illness, you may not be able to qualify for enlistment..
What disqualifies you from going to the military?
You cannot go to the military if: You have a physical disqualification that does not permit you to perform or receive a class or category of duties or responsibilities for which you are qualified; or, you are under any of the classifications listed below. The classifications include: having a Single disability rating as a result of a psycho-social disability; being a drug abuser as determined by a DoDM (Department of Defense) physical evaluation board; being a drug abuser as determined by non-DoDM physical evaluation board; being an alcohol abuser as determined by a DoDM physical evaluation board; having a civilian felony conviction with a sentence of more than two years; having a dishonorable discharge from any branch of armed services; being convicted of a variety of offenses; being a member of a subversive organization; being a security risk; not being able to pilot a military aircraft because of a physical disability; having a severe physical disability; having moral or professional defects; or, having a physical disability preventing compliance with the Air Force’s height and weight standards..
Is bipolar disorder genetic?
It is believed that genetics may play a role in bipolar disorder. This is because if one identical twin has bipolar disorder, there is a __% chance that the other twin will also have it. But if the twins are not identical, this figure increases to __%. The tendency to develop bipolar disorder may be due to a chemical imbalance in the brain. Studies have shown that people with bipolar disorder tend to have lower levels of certain chemicals in the brain and higher levels of others. Therefore, doctors are researching the role of brain chemicals called neurotransmitters in bipolar disorder..
Does the military check your mental health records?
In short, yes they do. There are various reasons they might do so, such as: – If a member of your family is deemed to be a risk to themselves or their surroundings o If there have been any signs of suicidal thoughts o Any alcohol related misconduct or addiction issues. – If you have been arrested for a crime or DUI in the past. When you are in the recruitment or even after, you will undergo some mental health testing. These are designed to find any problems you may have, which can include things like personality disorder, being a sociopath, or even ADHD. If you have any of these then you will be rejected from the military. In short, this is one of the most immediate reasons they are going to look at your mental health records. The good news is that if you know you have a disorder then you have time to sort it out. If you do, then you can be accepted into the military. If you do not, you will be rejected without fail. You can ensure a smooth and problem-free entry into the military by checking with your doctor to see if you have any mental health issues that you need to take care of before you apply..
Can I join the military with ADHD?
You certainly can! Any military service has its own requirements, but they generally ignore things like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Just make sure you go through a medical examination first. On the other hand, you don’t actually need to join the military to get a job that helps you stay fit and make some money. There are plenty of jobs that don’t entail serving your country. Depending on where you live, you may be able to find a career in fire-fighting, police work, or even a commercial fishing vessel. Most people don’t get rich doing these things, of course, but if you work hard, you can make enough to support yourself, and even have time to work on your academic or professional goals. Plus, most of these jobs are more likely to hire people with a history of ADHD, because they’re more used to working with people who have a hard time sitting still..
What happens if MEPS disqualifies you?
If MEPS disqualifies you, you must contact the local MEPS within 10 days of your MEPS notification letter (i.e., the letter that tells you that you have been disqualified). The local MEPS will arrange for you to have a hearing in front of a Disqualification Review Board (“DRB”). The hearing will give you an opportunity to present evidence and to tell your story. The DRB will consider your evidence and your story and will decide whether to return you to processing for the remainder of your period of service or to administratively separate you from the military with an Other Than Honorable (OTH) discharge..
What diseases are not allowed in the military?
Some diseases are not allowed in the military. The following is a list of some of the most common diseases found on the Armed Forces Health Profiles site: Acne, Allergic reactions such as hives and hay fever, Arthritis, Asthma, Birth defects, Cancer, Depression, Drug and alcohol abuse, Eating disorders, Epilepsy, Gout, Heart disease, Hepatitis, High blood pressure, High cholesterol, Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid), Infertility, Kidney stones, Liver disease, Lupus, Marfan syndrome, Mental disorders, Migraine headaches, Mitral valve prolapse, Obesity, Osteoarthritis, Osteoporosis, Peripheral vascular disease, Pneumonia, Psoriasis, Sleep apnea, Stomach ulcers, Substance abuse, and Ulcers..
Can you work for the CIA with a mental illness?
No! One of the main assets the CIA is looking for in its employees is the ability to think on your feet and to make decisions in the field. While there are no strict rules as to what you can and can’t do to work for the CIA, it’s advised that you don’t mention any mental illnesses on your application. According to the Agency, it’s not a pre-requisite to have a PhD. However, applicants must be high school diploma or equivalent to apply for a position..
Does a 5150 disqualify you from the military?
A 5150 is an involuntary psychiatric hold, which can be caused by a suicidal gesture. Does a 5150 disqualify you from the military? Technically, yes. You can’t be an active duty in the military if you have a disability preventing you from handling a weapon. The Army Medical Entrance Processing Command has a slightly different take on this. They say that a 5150 doesn’t mean a disqualification, but a waiver..
Can MEPS pull medical records?
No. They can not. MEPS can not pull your medical records. So, if you have a fear of an MEPS exam, it is possible that you have a fear of what they are going to find in your medical records. What MEPS can do is check your medical records. To do this MEPS will first contact your doctor (and/or the pharmacy) and request copies of your medical records. Once they receive the records, they will review them. Once they are done, they will then issue a new report that shows a second opinion. The report will show the results of the MEPS exam and it will also include what was in your medical records. So, it is possible that you have a fear of what they are going to find in your records. However, MEPS can not pull your medical records..