Every June, Men’s Health Awareness month highlights the importance for men to make their physical and mental health a priority. Men are half as likely to visit the doctor for a checkup as women are, and more than seven million American men have not seen a doctor in over ten years. In addition, a Cleveland Clinic survey in 2019 found that 82% of men report a desire to stay healthy and live longer for those who rely on them, yet only 50% engage in preventative care. Reasons cited in this study included embarrassment, lack of convenience, not wanting to hear a bad diagnosis, and being told not to complain about medical problems as children as the main reasons for pushing off a visit to their health care provider. It’s time for men to take a proactive approach to health and break the stigma.
There are several times a man should be getting routine appointments with their health care provider to ensure good health. Our preventative care and primary care services help ensure all get the adequate care they need to help live a healthy life. Lamprey Health Care’s Medical Director, Dr. Vasuki Nagaraj, agrees and sees first-hand men’s hesitancy to maintain preventative health measures. “We need to normalize men taking their health seriously and encourage them, especially at a young age, to speak up and voice their concerns surrounding their health.” Dr. Nagaraj also offers easy, healthy tips men can do every day to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
- Get enough sleep: aim for 7-9 hours of sleep per night.
- Fuel your body: focus on a variety of nutrients instead of calorie counting.
- Move more: start walking for 10 minutes a day. Build up to more activity over time. However, always check with your provider before beginning any exercise plan.
- Drink enough water: drink about 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids for men. If that seems too much, start with a cup of water before each meal.
- Check-in with yourself: mental health affects your overall health. Lamprey Health Care integrates behavioral health at all locations to make it easier for patients to speak with someone.
- Visit your doctor every year: see your doctor once a year. Even if you feel great, the annual visit is a time to ask questions and take preventative measurements.
At Lamprey Health Care, we treat the whole person with a team approach with your primary care providers (PCP) and our behavioral health providers. After more than a year of quarantines, social distancing, and widespread fear of going out in public, men have been seeking health-related services more than ever, many find a flexible approach to care beneficial. In an online survey among approximately 1,000 U.S. males 18 years or older, Cleveland Clinic found that 77% of men report their stress level has increased as a result of COVID-19. Stress and depression top mental health disorders spiking over the last year; both can lead to serious physical health issues such as heart disease, digestive system issues, lowered immune system, and more.
How can you help?
Take advantage of June by opening the discussion on maintaining good health with the important men in your life. If it’s been more than a year since the last routine visit, take the next step and call our office to schedule your wellness checkup today. Lamprey Health Care is accepting new patients, and we provide care to all regardless of ability to pay.
*Wheeler, Tracy. “Cleveland Clinic ‘Coping with COVID’ Survey Illustrates the Mental and Physical Toll the Pandemic Is Taking on Men.” Cleveland Clinic Newsroom, Cleveland Clinic Newsroom, 1 Oct. 2020, newsroom.clevelandclinic.org/2020/09/02/cleveland-clinic-coping-with-covid-survey-illustrates-the-mental-and-physical-toll-the-pandemic-is-taking-on-men/.