Advice & Knowledge

Men’s Health - Let’s Start the Conversation

Written by Advice Team on November 2, 2017

Since 2003, the month historically known as November is now known amongst many as Movember. And it’s a good thing. Movember is a month dedicated to the awareness of men’s health and what we can do, as both men and women, to help tackle the real issue; that men are dying too young. The Movember Foundation’s objectives are very simple. They want to change the face of men’s health. They want men to talk about their problems.

Men experience worse longer-term health than women and die on average six years earlier.

Prostate cancer rates will double in the next 15 years.

Testicular cancer rates have doubled in the last 50 years.

Three-quarters of suicides are men.

Poor mental health leads to 500,000 men talking their own life every year. That works out as one every minute.

We can’t afford to stay silent. The enthusiasm from men and women across the globe has been monumental in support of men’s health. We all have men in our lives and it’s time we helped put a stop to them being another statistic.

Here are some of the facts so spread the word and get talking. You could be saving a life by doing so.

Prostate Cancer

It’s the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men in the UK and if it’s detected early, there’s a 98% chance of survival. If it’s detected late, that figure drops to 26%. Your risk of prostate cancer increases with age but that doesn’t mean it’s a disease that will only affect older men.

You might have heard of a PSA test. It’s a simple routine blood test which determines measurements of Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) in the blood. You can ask your doctor about PSA testing to catch cancer early. Not everyone experiences the symptoms of prostate cancer. It’s often the case that they’re detected by routine check-ups with your GP.

Though some of the signs and symptoms are:

1. A need to urinate frequently, especially at night 2. Difficulty starting urination or holding back urine 3. Weak or interrupted flow of urine 4. Painful or burning urination 5. Difficulty in having an erection 6. Painful ejaculation 7. Blood in urine or semen 8. Frequent pain or stiffness in the lower back, hips, or upper thighs

If you’re experiencing some or even just one of these symptoms, get in touch with your doctor.

Testicular Cancer

Testicular cancer knows no age and can strike young.

47% of men that are diagnosed in the UK each year are aged 35 and under. Men with a family history of testicular cancer are at increased risk too. There are several types of testicular cancer, but the most common is the germ cell tumour. Testicular cancer starts as an abnormal growth that can develop in one or both testicles.

The good news is that testicular cancer is highly treatable and if it’s effectively treated it can be cured. It’s simple for you to check for too.

Roll your testicles between thumb and forefinger to see if anything feels a little different to usual. Just do it on a regular basis and if something isn’t quite feeling right, go speak to your doctor.

Mental Health and Suicide Prevention

1 in 8 men in the UK have experienced a mental health problem and 3 out of 4 suicides are men.

Men aren’t talking about mental health and a lot of men say they feel uncomfortable asking their friends for help. Something has to change. We need to talk. We’re there for our friends, aren’t we? Maybe we should make the first move. Ask, listen, encourage them to take action but don’t forget to check in with them after.

Don’t put off the conversation.

For more information on Movember or Men’s Health, visit the Movember Foundation website.

To speak to someone immediately about mental health and suicide prevention, get in touch with the Samaritans.