June is National Men's Health Month and the week leading up to Father's Day is celebrated as Men's Health Week. Men's health is critical to the health of families and communities but often is ignored or postponed as family and career obligations take priority.
According to the CDC, the top 5 leading causes of death in men are heart disease, cancer, unintentional injuries, chronic lower respiratory disease, and stroke. These are all potentially preventable, but men are significantly less likely than women to attend regular preventive health visits with their doctor. This disparity is worsened when men do not have health insurance coverage. Chronic diseases and lack of health insurance are more common in men in racial minority groups. Men in the LGBTQ community and in racial minority groups can also face bias when accessing healthcare and therefore may be less likely to seek care.
According to the American Society for Suicide Prevention, men are 3.6 times more likely than women to die by suicide. Veterans and members of the LGBTQ community are significantly more likely to attempt and die by suicide. Mental health concerns are often stigmatized and there are many barriers to accessing care, but having a strong relationship with a primary care doctor can help break down these barriers and get you the care you need to stay physically and mentally well.
This week, I want to encourage men to think- when was your last check-up? If you can't remember, it is time! Self-care is essential to your health and the health of your family. Schedule your preventive health exam with your doctor today. At Vida Family Medicine, we are currently accepting new patients and look forward to helping keep you and your family healthy. We will review your personal health history and risk factors and come up with a plan to keep you well. Contact us to learn more about our affordable membership program and schedule your wellness appointment today!