Men die, on average, around 2 years earlier than women. They are more likely to smoke, drink excessively, be greater risk takers, have more dangerous professions, take their own lives or die from heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes or Parkinson’s disease. Now that’s a pretty lengthy list of what can go wrong for our men-folk, but before we go further along the lines of suggesting that men are just unhealthier than women, there is another factor at play that we need to consider.
Men just do not go to the doctor as often as women.
In fact, men are three times more likely than women to go five years or more between doctors’ visits and twice as likely to have never seen a doctor in their adult lives! It may be that they ‘feel fine’ and can’t see the reason to make an appointment, but the reality is that many chronic diseases have few or no symptoms early in the disease process when they can be treated, cured or reversed easily.
Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney disease and even heart disease are conditions that develop slowly over time, so by the time you are feeling unwell, it can be much harder (and more costly) to turn things around.
In the same sense that you wouldn’t wait for your car to break down before taking it to the mechanic, you shouldn’t wait until you are sick to visit the doctor. As the saying goes – 'prevention really is better than a cure!’
We took a look at some common reasons that men give for not having an annual check-up with their GP, debunked the myths and put some strategies together to make the process a little less daunting.
You can also use the Guys’ Guide to know when and why you need to make an appointment, as well as, what you can expect when you get there. Men, it’s good to think of this as a ‘manufacturer’s maintenance schedule’ and just get on with it. Set alarms in your phone or write reminders in your diary to remind you to make the appointments (and go!). It really is the way to make sure that you’re here for both a good time and a long time.
"I can’t go because…"
If you want to learn more about diabetes, we have dedicated information pages:
If you have already been diagnosed with diabetes and would like to know more about how best to manage your condition, you can join our personalised 12 week diabetes program. We can tailor your program to give you more of what you want to see, for example tips of carb counting or exercise. Plus, the first week is completely free!
You can also read about what other people thought about the program on our Testimonials page .
© 2021 My Health Explained by Dr Sultan Linjawi.
All rights reserved.