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Men’s Health Awareness Month & The Importance of Preventative Health Care

Men’s Health Awareness Month & The Importance of Preventative Health Care

June is Men’s Health Awareness Month and the perfect time to remind the men in your life that early detection and treatment are key when it comes to preventing chronic health problems. One of the best ways a man can protect his health is by keeping regular physical exam appointments with his primary care provider. These appointments offer male patients the opportunity to discuss getting important cancer screenings, continue monitoring heart health, and routinely evaluate their risk factors for Type 2 diabetes, among other things.

Your primary care provider is your closest ally in helping prevent chronic disease, especially those men who are most susceptible and may remain undiagnosed without early detection. By keeping up to date with appointments, you can not only have peace of mind with routine screenings you may need but receive personalized advice from the provider you can take to improve your lifestyle and wellbeing.

Topics Men Can Discuss with Their Primary Care Providers

The most prevalent health conditions affecting adult men include prostate cancer, colorectal cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and shingles. While these diseases all have different characteristics, they have one big thing in common, and that’s the fact that they don’t always produce symptoms until the disease is advanced and more challenging to treat successfully. For example, high blood pressure is known as “the silent killer” because it often has no symptoms and remains untreated until a major heart event occurs like a heart attack or stroke.

These are some of the things you may want to discuss during your routine physical exams with your health care provider:

  • Prostate cancer: Because about 1 in every 6 men will be diagnosed with this disease during their lifetime, the American Cancer Society recommends men should discuss the need for prostate cancer screenings for earlier detection. Screening involves a simple blood test and/or a digital rectal exam.
  • Colon cancer screening: Colon and rectal cancer are more prevalent in men than women, but fortunately, it can often be cured in its earliest stages. The unfortunate truth, though, is that many people who would have benefitted from routine preventative screenings forego this important procedure. Ask your doctor for recommendations about when to start colon cancer screenings, called colonoscopies, based on your medical history, diet, and lifestyle.
  • Blood pressure monitoring: It’s crucial to keep tabs on your blood pressure, especially the older you get. Without knowing your blood pressure status, you are at higher risk for health problems later on. The top two reasons people get heart disease or sustain a stroke is from undetected and untreated high blood pressure, also called hypertension.
  • Type 2 diabetes: Common risk factors for developing this chronic disease include being overweight, 45+ years of age, and having a family history of Type 2 diabetes. Your provider can diagnose it with a simple blood test and then discuss your results and determine the next steps. Remember, as with the other diseases mentioned, Type 2 diabetes is also very serious and can lead to potentially devastating complications if left untreated, such as blindness, kidney failure, and heart disease.
  • Shingles vaccine: This virus can cause immense pain and discomfort, but fortunately, there is an immunization available and recommended by the CDC for adults aged 50 and over. Ask your primary care provider about receiving two doses of this vaccine to protect yourself against shingles.
  • Other topics: Mental health screening, eye exams, osteoporosis screenings, flu shots, pneumonia vaccines, COVID-19 vaccines, and more. Ask your doctor what is important for your individual circumstances.

Men are in control of their own physical well-being and the best way they can keep healthy is by initiating and maintaining a good working relationship with their primary care provider. Remember that men’s health is a marathon more than it is a sprint, and you can do your part outside of the doctor’s office to keep yourself healthy. That means making smart lifestyle choices like limiting alcohol intake, avoiding tobacco use, and getting plenty of exercise.

Whether You’re a Father, Brother, or Son, Florida Health Care Plans Care About Your Health

At FHCP, we promote better health and wellness not just for men, but for all. That’s why our medical care coverage offers policyholders many health care benefits and access to specialists in Flagler, Volusia, Seminole, Brevard, and St. Johns counties. Visit our website to find affordable health insurance near you or start shopping for plans today.

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