Movember is Men’s Health Month: How to Participate
Ready? Set? Grow! We’re talking about a mustache or facial hair of course because #MOVEMBER is happening this month. Also known as “men’s health awareness month”, and a movement that has a bigger cause behind it, than growing a ‘stache’ this fall.
During MOVEMBER the spotlight is on men to encourage them to do more “preventative maintenance” when it comes to their health. Rather than waiting until the “check engine” light is on. And that includes regular doctor visits and important healthy lifestyle changes.
Facts You May Not Know About Men’s Health
Life expectancy rates for women and men dropped for the first time in decades, in 2021. American women have an average life expectancy of 79.1 years (compared to 79.9 years in 2020). That represented a drop of 0.8 years.
For men, the drop in life expectancy was more significant. The average life expectancy for an American man in 2020 was 74.2 years of age. But by 2021, life expectancy rates for males dropped to 73.2 years. One full year of life expectancy was lost. And researchers wanted to understand why.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are several factors that are contributing to a higher mortality rate for men. And many of these factors are impacted by lifestyle factors that can be changed, to improve health outcomes for men.
- The percentage of men aged 20+ with hypertension (high blood pressure) has risen to 51.9%, increasing cardiovascular (heart attack or stroke) risks
- 12.5% of men under the age of sixty-five (65) years do not have health insurance.
- 40.5% of American men are overweight or obese. This increases the risk of developing life-threatening health conditions like coronary heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and other cardiometabolic conditions.
- Only 43% of men aged 35 to 54 regularly see their physician for routine examinations and preventative care.
One of the missions of the MOVEMBER movement is to create change. That means shifting the narrative and ending the social stigmas that prevent men from seeking healthcare. Because when it comes to visiting a doctor? Some men will avoid it for a variety of reasons. And often at a detriment to their own health.
Staying on Top of Your Preventative Maintenance
When it comes to taking care of your vehicle, chances are you know a thing or two about maintenance. Whether that means checking the tires, getting regular oil changes, and watching for warning lights that can indicate a problem under the hood.
But when it comes to visiting a doctor? Some men will avoid it for a variety of reasons. And often at a detriment to their own health. Men can be great at preventive maintenance for a vehicle. But when it comes to taking steps to protect personal health, they are not always as diligent.
In fact, several recent surveys indicate that men will do just about anything to avoid going to a doctor. And that is a big problem. Because some of the leading causes of life-threatening illness for men are preventable, or treatable. Provided that the disease was detected earlier (rather than later), when there are more treatment options.
With a balanced lifestyle and stress management, nutrition, exercise, and regular visits to a doctor for check-ups, you can substantially reduce your risks. Consider these steps to be the most important preventative maintenance you can do, for a happy, and healthier life.
How to Participate in #Movember
November is men’s health month, and there are a variety of ways that men (and women) can participate. And advance awareness of men’s health issues, while supporting research and educational programs that can save lives.
Movember is a non-profit event and organization that has launched over 1,200 projects across the country. Everything from clinical studies to mental health and suicide prevention, and programs centered around the prevention of prostate and testicular cancer.
Get ready to have some fun in #Movember! Men can participate by not shaving for the entire month. Family, friends, and co-workers can donate to the cause (and enjoy watching the stubble turn into some pretty impressive mustaches, beards, and goatees.
Simply download the app, and create your own profile (Mo Space). Stop shaving and get loud and proud about men’s health month. And if you are participating in #Movember, share a picture with our team at DocMJ on Facebook.