This week is International Men’s Health Week.
You may be asking, why all the attention on Men’s Health?
A baby boy born in 2010 has a life expectancy of 78 years, while a baby girl born at the same time can expect to live to 82 years. From birth, males are more susceptible to illness, accidents, and are more like to die earlier than females.
Many of the reasons men die earlier, are largely preventable. Men are more likely to get sick from serious health problems due to not seeking help early on. However, there are some simple things you can do to help you live a longer, happier life.
What are some things I can do?
Men take their own lives four times more often than women, and one in eight men suffers from depression at any given time. Staying connected with your mates and family is important for maintaining good mental health. Make time to catch up, and check in on your mates.
Talking about your health could save your life. Being there for your mates could also save theirs. 70% of men say their mates can rely on them, but only 48% say they would reach out to their friends. Men are there for their friends, but are worried about asking for help. Reaching out when you need it, is crucial.
It is also important to reach out to health professionals when you need it. Many serious health problems can be avoided if treated early, however men are less likely to seek professional help for a health issue. Talking to a doctor as soon as you notice something could save your life.
Know your risk factors
Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men worldwide, and rick increases with age. At 50, men should be asking their doctor about prostate cancer, and whether they should have a PSA test (a simple blood test). Men who are of African or Caribbean descent, or have a relative with prostate cancer, should be having this conversation at 45.
Know what’s normal for you
In Australia, testicular cancer is the most common cancer in young men. Get to know what’s normal for your testicles. Check regularly (around once a month), and speak to your doctor if something doesn’t feel right.
Get active and do more of what makes you feel good. It can be as simple as
- Plan a walking meeting
- Park further away from the station
- Get off the bus or train earlier
- Take the stairs
- Cycle instead of driving
Every extra bit of activity will help lower your risk of developing a preventable illness.
If you have any concerns about a men’s health issue, O’Connell St Clinic have doctors who are specifically interested in Men’s Health. To book an appointment for a health review, call our reception team on (02) 9241 1577, or click here.