Celebrate Men’s Health Month by taking an honest look at your overall health. Throughout your lifetime, you may face healthcare challenges that are more commonly experienced by men. Let’s dive into some important insights and simple strategies to help you keep you safe, healthy and feeling your best at any age.
Ladies, you’re not off the hook—talk to the men in your life about how to stay as healthy as possible and learn to watch out for any symptoms that may be a sign of something more serious.
Top 10 health challenges
As men age, disease, genetics and lifestyle can all contribute to the development of disorders and injury. These are the top 10 things that impact men (and what you can do to prevent them!).
- Heart disease
- Unintentional injuries
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Stroke and other cerebrovascular diseases
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Liver disease and cirrhosis
- Kidney disease
Exams and screenings
Combat these illnesses by catching and treating them as early as possible. Annual physicals and screenings are often the best opportunities for early diagnoses and interventions. The types of exams change over the years, so here’s a guideline for the types you should get based on age (talk to your primary care physician [PCP] to determine the timing for each exam):
Top screenings and exams for men
|All ages||Ages 18-391||Ages 40-642||Ages 65+3|
7 health and safety tips
In addition to regular exams, screenings and discussions with your doctor, healthy lifestyle changes can have a big impact on how you feel and how you age. Take charge of your health—start with our list of guy-friendly tips, tools and tactics to stay well:
- Alcohol and tobacco use:In the U.S., alcohol use disorder (AUD) affects about 16 million people—almost ⅔ are men (9.8 million). The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism recommends that men have no more than four drinks on any day or 14 drinks per week. The term “drinks” includes beer, wine and spirits.
- Bone health:To combat the development of osteoporosis (bone disease) as you age, be sure to include weight-bearing activities in your daily routine, especially as you mature. These activities include any form of walking (hiking, dancing), climbing stairs, strength-building using resistance bands, any type of weightlifting and yoga.
- Depression:Life events such as job change or loss, personal relationships or health issues can result in emotional distress. This can be short-term or chronic. If you are experiencing feelings of helplessness, if you’ve lost interest in activities that you used to enjoy, or especially if you’ve thought about suicide, tell your PCP immediately. Our Teladoc therapists are ready to talk to you seven days a week.
- Teladoc member Todd says, “Ms. Cruz is amazing. I’ve never been one to talk about my problems and have never talked to a therapist before her. I am very happy with the way things are going. She has helped me find some clarity in my current situation. I am extremely thankful to continue to talk with her.”
- Your doctor can work with you to get the help you need. Note: If you or anyone you know is in a crisis, please call 911 or contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 now.
- Erectile dysfunction (ED):Don’t think it’s “just you.” Medications for hypertension (high blood pressure) and mood conditions, such as depression, can cause ED. Mention your concerns to your PCP, and the two of you can work together to minimize this side effect.
- Personal safety:Since unintentional injuries are the third-leading cause of death for men in the U.S., check your home, office and vehicles for malfunctioning, missing or damaged safety mechanisms, such as car seat belts and home smoke detectors. Keep power tools in proper working condition; replace worn parts, and always wear appropriate safety equipment, such as goggles, gloves, ear protectors, helmets and protective clothing and footwear. If you own or use firearms, please make sure they are cleaned, don’t contain ammunition when not in use and are stored in a locked safe.
- Smoking:From traditional cigarettes to electronic nicotine delivery systems such as vaping pens and other e-cigarettes, the American Lung Association has determined that smoking, including secondhand smoke, is harmful.4 Smoking and other forms of tobacco use contribute to heart disease and cancer—the top two threats to men’s health. If you smoke, please talk with your PCP about ways to help you quit.
- Skin cancer:In addition to making you look—and possibly feel—younger, consistent use of sunscreen will help protect you from skin cancer. When shopping for one, be sure to look for the words “broad spectrum” and a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or more. If you’re going to be exercising or playing water sports, opt for a waterproof formula and be sure to reapply it often. If you have sensitive skin, also consider an oil-free type, especially for your face. Sunscreen can also include wearable sources such as hats and lightweight, long-sleeved clothing.
Visit with Teladoc
According to the American Heart Association, men delay seeing a doctor because they:5
- don’t have a PCP
- aren’t covered by health insurance
- are too busy
- don’t want to spend the money
- have a significant other who’s bugging them to see a doctor
Your Teladoc benefits include 24/7 access to a well-trained, highly experienced network of U.S. board-certified doctors who can diagnose and treat a wide variety of non-emergency conditions, including:
- back pain
- digestive issues
- joint swelling
- upper respiratory infections
- and much more
Doctors are available online, through the mobile app or by phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week. When medically necessary, the doctor can also send a prescription to a pharmacy located near you. If you do have a PCP, you can share your Teladoc visit results with your doctor.