For the purpose of enhancing health awareness among men, 2019 Men's Health Week will be held from June 10-16. Here are a few things men should keep in mind.
International Men’s Health Week is celebrated in several countries the week leading up to and including Father’s Day. The main goal of the annual celebration of this health campaign is to increase awareness of preventable health problems (both physical and mental) and encourage early detection and treatment of conditions among men and boys. This year, Men’s Health Week runs from 10-16 June.
This period is a good time for all men to reflect and focus on their health. According to a report, most men prefer to not discuss their health issues with people. Only 7% of men discuss health issues with their male friends. Almost one-fifth of men do not discuss private topics such as bedroom concerns, relationships, and urinary issues with anyone.
Most men don’t focus on their health due to the cultural norm (a conjecture which may not hold for all men) - “men are not supposed to show weaknesses and they must act tough” - which prevents them from discussing their health-related concerns as well. Moreover, such behavior in men can also be due to distrust in peers, lack of awareness and lack of self-care.
Chest pain, breathlessness, fatigue, depression, memory loss, and urinary crisis are among the top health concerns that most Indian men tend to ignore, said Dr. Binita Priyambada, Senior Consultant, Medical Team at Docprime.com. However, with the upsurge in awareness programs like Men’s Health Week, a change in outlook can be expected in the times to come. Here are a few things men should keep in mind.
An analysis of health issues in men: Men often don’t feel the need to get a health check-up until the situation warrants getting one. Ideally all men, regardless of their age, must get frequent health check-ups with their nearest healthcare provider.
Identification and care tips: The general health check-up may include the screening for diabetes, cholesterol and other lipids, nutritional deficiencies of iron, vitamin D, B12, and organ function tests if risk factors are there such as kidney, liver, thyroid, etc. Men are more prone to heart diseases and cancer but they tend to ignore the cautionary signs and end up encountering it in a later stage. Undergoing frequent health check-ups can help prevent any potential risks to their health.
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Analysis of lifestyle choices in men: Obesity, in general, is a global epidemic that we are facing currently. Almost 30% of people across the world are obese or overweight. Nearly 3 out of 4 men are either overweight or obese.
Identification and care tips: A waist size of 102 cm or above puts men at risk of heart diseases, diabetes, and cancer. Physical fitness is one of the most important aspects of health that men need to focus on. A change in lifestyle and the adoption of better habits can result in a healthier lifestyle. Physical fitness is easily attainable with dedication and will power. One can ideally begin by setting realistic goals like - changing food habits or incorporating at least one physical activity in your daily routine. Eating 5 nutritious portions of fruits and vegetables in a day or 150 minutes of moderate exercises in a week can result in physical and mental wellness. A healthy lifestyle also includes giving up any life-threatening habits such as - drinking alcohol and consuming tobacco infused products. If you are a habitual smoker then you must quit immediately to add years to your life.
An analysis of mental health in men: Most men feel uncomfortable discussing their issues with others. They tend to cave in and repress their emotions, which results in various mental health issues. It is said that about 75% of suicides are committed by men. Mental health in men is an increasingly alarming issue and it must be met with proper care.
Identification and care tips: Depression, anxiety, self-harm, self-image, and stress are some of the mental health issues that cannot and should not be avoided. No matter how much you try to suppress them, in times of struggle they will resurface again. A better way to deal with stress is to talk. Talk to your friends and family or a therapist, but talking is important. Any dread that you might experience is only temporary, a positive relationship with your mind and body is the only thing that will sustain. Seek help from wherever you feel safest, look out for support groups in your area that you can become a part of. It is important to boost habits that not only improve your mood daily but also help you live a long and fulfilling life.
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An analysis of men’s sexual well-being: Various physical, psychological, interpersonal, and social factors influence a man’s sexual health. It is estimated that at least 1 man in 10 has a problem related to having sex, such as premature ejaculation or erectile dysfunction. But most men feel uncomfortable discussing these issues with others, and getting the desired help sooner than later can save them from the existential dread and discomfort.
Identification and care tips: Sexual awareness and frequent self-examination are extremely important. Hepatitis B testing and vaccination, HIV prophylaxis or testing, protected sex, and other preventive measures can help secure men from catching sexually transmitted diseases, or STDs.
The bottom line is that self-care is at the heart of the physical and mental wellness of men. Men and boys should be raised in a world where they don’t end up concurring self-image issues. They must learn to care for themselves in the most wholesome way. The need for self-care in men is now more than ever, especially, when all the efforts are driven with the sole aim of ensuring men live a healthier life.
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