Women’s Health Tips From TRICARE: Get Annual Exams, Exercise, Eat Healthy


October is Women’s Health Month. It’s never too early or too late to improve your health. You should always feel empowered to take command and ownership of your health. Before your next visit, make a list of questions to ask your provider that address any health concerns and issues you may have, even if you feel healthy. Prevention is the best medicine.

According to the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health, the foundation of good health is the same, no matter if you’re a woman in your 20s or 90s. Annual women’s health services can increase your chance of surviving many preventable diseases, such as heart disease, breast and ovarian cancers, stroke, and obesity. TRICARE covers well-woman exams and Health Promotion and Disease Prevention exams annually for women under age 65. There’s no cost and you don’t need a referral.

For women using TRICARE For Life (TFL), you can still get women’s preventive screenings. But Medicare is your primary coverage, and TFL pays second. You’ll need to follow the Medicare rules first.

Well-woman exams include breast and pelvic exams, Pap tests, and HPV DNA testing. These exams also cover screenings for blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, and more. Even if you’re healthy, regular health screenings and scheduled visits to your health care provider can help you identify early signs of health issues. Keep in mind different screenings are important for women at different ages and stages of life.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that between 2013 and 2016, 41 percent of women age 20 and older in the U.S. were obese. Obesity increases the risk of developing many serious diseases and health conditions, according to CDC. You can change this reality. Creating good habits, like exercising, eating healthy, and getting adequate sleep can help you maintain a healthy weight and improve your overall health.

Don’t forget about mental health because it’s as important as physical health. If you’re experiencing mental health issues, seek help. TRICARE covers a variety of services for mental health and substance use disorder. Also, the TRICARE Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Fact Sheet provides an overview of TRICARE mental health care services.

A healthy lifestyle that includes regular screenings, exercise, and proper nutrition are key to preventive health and day-to-day wellness. This October and every day, take command of your health by addressing your health concerns.

At the time of posting, this information is current. For the most recent information, contact your TRICARE contractor or local military hospital or clinic.

Last Updated 10/14/2021