Men's Health Problems That Demand Attention

BEYOND MASCULINITY

Are you the kind of man who takes better care of your car or favourite gadget than your body? Then you’re not alone. We live in a world surrounded by many risk factors for poor health alongside lifestyle choices, including a lack of awareness, incomplete health education and an unhealthy work and personal life have caused a steady deterioration of the well-being of men.

 

In June 2010, there were 11.1 million males living in Australia—just under half of the total population, and in 2015 there were 7.9 million men between the age of 20-60. It’s time we talk about men’s health!

 

While we are all human species, the sex-specific biological differences between men and women need attention, because we are not genetic clones. We know that men suffer from illnesses and disease states most often seen in them or completely unique to them, such as prostate and testicular issues, male pattern baldness, Alport Syndrome, Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, fragile X, Red-Green colour blindness and haemophilia.

 

While the genetic conditions are quite rare, hormonal issues plague men as much as they do women, but with menopause and PMS taking the spotlight, what do we really know about how to help our men? And what treatments are available for them when it comes to natural health care modalities. But more so, what will entice our men to seek help when it come to their health?

Men don’t talk about their feelings as much as women do, and things like depression can have a greater impact on men due to fears of speaking out or never being supported to speak out, we are losing too many good men. Men’s health is something more than the magazine, and thanks to organisations and events such as “Movember” bringing light to men’s health issues, we now have growing platforms to discuss and tackle issues with men’s health.

There are too many occurrences in Australia that lead to males being more likely to engage in risk taking and dangerous behaviour, with more men admitted to emergency departments for accidents and injuries then women, an increased risk for suicide, a larger proportion measured to consume excessive amounts of alcohol and illicit substances, and be perpetrators of violence and abuse. The health assessment of Australian males needs to receive more attention.

The Australian Government has conducted research which consistently shows males have a shorter life expectancy, higher mortality from most causes of death (particularly injuries and intentional self-harm) and a higher lifetime risk of many cancers and chronic conditions.

 

Where are some areas of poor men’s health...

·         5% of adult males don’t eat sufficient fruit and vegetables

·         Two thirds of adult males and ¼ of boys aged 5-17 are overweight or obese

·         Half of all male’s report being a victim of violence once in their lifetime

·         Nearly half of Australian males have experienced a health condition

·         One quarter have a disability

·         One third have a chronic health condition.

Males make up a smaller cohort of visits to their GP, while one quarter don’t use any Medicare services at all. With men not engaging in health care as often as women, not using support services provided by government, health organisations and community infrastructure, how can we tackle this problem to lead us all to better outcomes in health care for our grandfathers, fathers, brothers, sons, friends and role models to beneficially impact Australian society as a whole.

At Healing Hands Natural Health Clinic, we will be doing a series of men’s health columns to keep you informed and updated as to the latest treatment options to get you (or your man) back to great health.

If you have any questions about any issues relating to men’s health challenges contact Katy Lawryk at Healing Hands Natural Health Clinic for a 30-minute complimentary consult during March to see if we can help.

 

 

 


 

ABS (Australian Bureau of Statistics) 2008. National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing 2007: summary of results. ABS cat. no. 4326.0. Canberra: ABS.

AIHW 2010a. Australia’s health 2010. Australia’s health series no. 12. Cat. no. AUS 122. Canberra: AIHW.

Australian Bureau of Statistics: Age and Sex, 2001-2015.  http://stat.data.abs.gov.au/Index.aspx?DatasetCode=ABS_ERP_ASGS

DoHA (Department of Health and Ageing) 2013. National Mental Health Report 2013: tracking progress of mental health reform in Australia 1993–2011. Canberra: DoHA.

The Health of Australian Males. 2011. Australian Institute of Health & Welfare, Canberra. http://www.aihw.gov.au/WorkArea/DownloadAsset.aspx?id=10737419201

Thom B 2003. Risk-taking behaviour in men: substance use and gender. Middlesex: NHS Health Development Agency.

Schofield T, Connell R, Walker L, et al. 2000. Understanding men’s health and illness: a gender-relations

Smith JA, Braunack-Mayer A & Wittert G 2003. What do we know about men’s help-seeking and health service