A month dedicated to men’s health
Since 1994, the entire month of June has been designated as Men’s Health Month meant to raise awareness of issues impacting the health and wellness of men and boys. This month helps educate and remind men and their loved ones of the preventable health problems affecting men. The goal is to encourage men to seek out early detection and treatment of disease or illnesses they may face.
“Men’s health matters,” exclaimed Dr. David Samadi, Director of Men’s Health and Urologic Oncology at St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn, New York. “As a urologist, I’ve had the privilege of taking care of thousands of men in my career. My top priority is to not only educate but also to inspire my male patients to make their health and wellness their top priority too.”
Quick facts on the state of men’s health
Men are often thought of as the stronger sex. But when figures and statistics on men’s overall health and well-being are crunched, the reality looks radically different. Men are far more likely to be affected by certain diseases and die at a younger age than women. Here is the truth of what really is going on when it comes to men and their health:
- When it comes to rates of death, men will die at a higher rate than women from 9 of the top 10 causes of death and are the victims of over 92% of workplace death.
- In 1920, women lived on average, one year longer than men. Today, men, on average, die almost five years earlier than women.
- American men live sicker lives and die at a younger age than American women.
- Men are not good about getting annual health checkups. Women are 100% more likely to visit the doctor for annual examinations and preventative services than men.
- African-American men are at a much higher risk of being the victim of a homicide – 1 in 30 black men compared to 1 in 132 black females; for white men – 1 in 179 for while males compared to 1 in 495 for white females.
- Men are more likely to be undiagnosed with depression as they are four times more likely to commit suicide than women.
- Men are at a higher risk of dying from the following disease than women – heart disease, cancer, injuries, stroke, suicide, and HIV/AIDS.
- For every 100 baby girls born, there are 115 baby boys born. Yet, the male fetus is at a greater risk of miscarriage and stillbirth.
- Of newborn babies, males are 25% more likely to die than females.
- Baby boys make up 3 out of every 5 sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) occurrences.
- Men have two times the rate of hearing loss than women.
- The male hormone testosterone is linked to elevations of LDL, the bad cholesterol and declines in HDL, the good cholesterol.
- Men appear to have a weaker immune system as they fewer infection-fighting T-cells than women.
- By the age of 100, women outnumber men eight to one.
How to support men’s health
Let’s make 2020 the year of an all-out effort supporting men’s health. It’s often not until a man has personally experienced a life-threatening illness or witnessed firsthand a close friend or loved one go through a health scare that they begin to take better care of themselves.
“Healthier men live happier, longer lives,” explained Dr. Samadi. “But unfortunately, men may not always take the best care of themselves. They often neglect their health by skipping annual checkups, overwork themselves with few breaks for relaxation, or ignore advice on eating healthy or taking time for regular exercise. It’s a perfect scenario for setting men up for future major chronic health issues.”
“Men’s Health Month is an ideal time to talk with men about disease prevention and their personal health,” said Dr. Samadi. “Men need an ally not an antagonist. They need encouragement to maintain good health habits and self-care and to find healthy ways of asking for help without concerns of looking weak or unmanly.”
Here a few ideas and a step in the right direction of advancing men’s health by becoming more involved in the health and well-being of your grandfather, father, husband, brother, or son:
- Help the men in your life to set up regular doctor/dentist/optometrist appointments. Men often do not think of these things and could use your help
- Learn more about health conditions affecting men and how to help them prevent these issues.
- Remind men to take care of themselves by choosing healthier foods, becoming physically active, wearing sunscreen, and taking time to engage in activities/hobbies.
- Be sure they have regular health screenings such as prostate exams checking for prostate cancer and performing testicular self-exams checking for testicular cancer.
- Discourage excessive alcohol consumption or smoking cigarettes or using chewing tobacco. If either is a problem, consult with their primary care doctor on seeking help.
To find out more on bringing health awareness and disease prevention messages to men, visit menshealthnetwork.org.
Dr. David Samadi is the Director of Men’s Health and Urologic Oncology at St. Francis Hospital in Long Island. He’s a renowned and highly successful board certified Urologic Oncologist Expert and Robotic Surgeon in New York City, regarded as one of the leading prostate surgeons in the U.S., with a vast expertise in prostate cancer treatment and Robotic-Assisted Laparoscopic Prostatectomy. Visit Dr. Samadi’s websites at robotic oncology and prostate cancer 911.