Did you know that men are 33 percent less likely to see a doctor than women?
Hey fellas! When it comes to staying fit, sharp and at the top of your game, the buck stops with you. The good news is the leading health threats that men face are largely preventable. That means YOU can take control of them!
The big health concern is heart disease. It is the leading cause of death in men, accounting for one in every four deaths. After that, the top killers for men are lung, prostate and colorectal cancers, according to the CDC.
Despite these facts, men are less likely than women to have visited a doctor within the past year.
“Perhaps one reason men don’t go to the doctor is because they are too busy with their jobs and family and feel that they have no time to see a doctor and tend to put any health concerns on hold,” Dino Morello, MD, of Mercy Health – Kings Mill Primary Care shares. “This puts themselves at risk; something as simple as an occasional episode of indigestion can actually be sign of a severe heart disease!”
It’s important for everyone to see a primary care provider.
No matter your age, getting established with a primary care provider is the first step. Yearly appointments with a primary care provider can help catch medical issues before they become costly and difficult to treat. Annual appointments include screenings for blood pressure, body mass index, diabetes, physical exam, cholesterol and social history assessment (which includes tobacco, alcohol use and sexual activity).
Your primary care provider can also help to make sure you’re up to date on the appropriate annual screenings for your age, gender and family history, such as a colorectal screening and rectal exam or prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) test.
Dr. Morello says it needs to start with addressing specifics.
“Men should have routine exams for blood pressure monitoring, blood work for cholesterol, metabolic, diabetic and prostate screenings as well as colorectal screenings starting at age 45,” he shares.
Additional men’s health tips:
- If you smoke, there is no better time to quit than now. Smoking is the major cause of heart disease and lung cancer.
- Diet and nutrition. Enjoy a variety of healthy foods daily, including at least five servings of fruits and vegetables. Choose lean meats, low-fat dairy products and whole grains. Limit foods high in salt, fat and sugar.
- De-stress your life. Talk to your doctor if you’re feeling depressed or anxious, or if you’re being threatened or hurt by someone.
- Aim to be physically active for 30 to 60 minutes on most days. Walk the dog, bike or take the stairs — it all counts!
Learn more about the primary care services we offer at Mercy Health and find a provider near you.