Top 6 Health Risks Affecting Men

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How long has it been since your last checkup? Here are six health risks men face and why seeing your doctor regularly plays a vital role in staying healthy.

#1. Heart disease.

More than 600 million people die of heart disease each year in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control, and more than half of them are men. It’s the number one killer of men, and coronary artery disease is the most common culprit.

Heart disease is called “the silent killer” because it can be symptomless—so if you’re not prioritizing or paying attention to your health, you could miss it.

It’s never too late to make a change, so make sure you’re getting yearly checkups at any age.

#2. Stroke.

Strokes are another leading cause of death in men and a frequent cause of long-term disability in stroke survivors. Several risk factors like smoking and being overweight may increase your chances for stroke, but high blood pressure is the main culprit.

#3. Cancer.

Two-thirds of melanoma deaths in 2013 were men, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation.

But it’s not just skin cancer that’s a concern, says Dr. J.S. Rad. Other cancers, like prostate, bladder, testicular, colorectal and lung cancer, are all highly prevalent among men.

“Some of these cancers are less likely to occur with healthy lifestyles,” said Dr. Rad. “Regardless, men should prioritize regular screenings for this reason—the early you detect growing cancer, the higher chances of a better outcome.”

#4.Suicide.

In 2017, the suicide rate among males remained nearly four times higher than among females, according to data from the National Institute of Mental Health.

Many factors, including depression or anxiety, increase suicide risk.

Contact your doctor or reach out to a mental health professional if you’re experiencing symptoms of a mental health disorder or if you feel you could benefit from talk therapy and/or other treatment methods.

#5. Diabetes.

Often a result of years of poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle, diabetes occurs when blood glucose levels are too high and the body incorrectly processes food for energy. Men are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes at a lower weight than women, according to the CDC.

Left untreated, diabetes can injure the kidneys, damage your eyesight and increase your risk for heart disease and stroke.

#6. Enlarged Prostate.

In the U.S., 12 million men are treated for an enlarged prostate (BPH). An enlarged prostate presses against the urethra causing it to narrow and men can experience the inability to empty the bladder fully. Some symptoms include a full-bladder feeling, even after urinating, a weak flow of urine, trouble starting to urinate or needing to push or strain to urinate.

Dr. Rad is now offering an alternative to daily medication to treat BPH called UroLift. UroLift is a one-time, in-office solution that provides rapid relief and recovery for men living with symptoms of an enlarged prostate.

“UroLift breaks the cycle of medications and how they make a person feel, all without the risks of traditional surgery,” says Dr. Rad. “The goal of the UroLift System treatment is to relieve symptoms so men can get back to their life and resume daily activities.”

Tips for preventing common men’s health problems

To lower risks for top health issues affecting men, take the following steps if you aren’t already:

  1. Visit your doctor regularly and stay on top of your health.
  2. Know your numbers (BMI, triglycerides, blood pressure, cholesterol, etc.)
  3. Exercise regularly. – No less than 30 minutes per day of activity
  4. Consume a healthy, well-balanced diet. – Fruits, vegetables, lean protein and complex, fiber-rich carbohydrates
  5. Don’t smoke or use tobacco.
  6. Limit alcohol intake.

Schedule an appointment with a Mon Health primary care physician.