Men’s Health Month is nearly over, we’re going to nag you a little. When was the last time you scheduled your annual checkup? If you’re the average male, it’s probably been a while. In fact, according to the CDC, men are 100% less likely to get their yearly exams and preventive care than women.1 Millions of men don’t even have a regular doctor they see. How can that be?
Why Do Most Men Avoid Regular Check-ups?
There are obviously as many reasons for staying away from the doctor as there are men. Some men say it’s inconvenient to take time off from work, or they won’t go unless something is wrong, or sometimes they’re worried that the doctor will indeed find something wrong. For the most part, men simply aren’t programmed to think they need to see the doctor for regular exams.
So you’re not alone in your avoidance, but you’re missing out on the best chance you have at preventing or early detection of conditions like heart disease, stroke, cancer or COPD.
Why Are Annual Medical Examinations So Important For Men?
Preventive care is one of the best favors you can do for yourself, especially if you are over age 40. Did you know that almost 133 million Americans are living with a chronic disease or condition and many aren’t even aware of their condition?2 The four diseases mentioned above—heart disease, stroke, cancer and COPD—also happen to be the leading causes of death in men. What most men don’t realize is that these and many other conditions are highly preventable and very treatable if detected early.
4 Good Reasons to Schedule Your Annual Checkup:
1) Stop health problems before they develop. Good preventive care obviously begins before you get sick. A lot of physicians are starting to focus on more than just treating illness. The emphasis has now shifted to prevention. Abundant scientific evidence shows that many diseases can be avoided altogether or even healed by adopting a healthy lifestyle. By seeing your doctor annually, he or she can help you monitor changes in your weight, blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, hormone levels and other key health gauges.
2) Some diseases don’t warn you until it’s too late. Did you know that high cholesterol and high blood pressure don’t have obvious symptoms to alert you? Yet, both of these conditions, if left untreated, put you at greater risk of heart attack and stroke. Type 2 diabetes can also appear without warning. The same goes for prostate and colon cancers which can progress to advanced stages before presenting symptoms. If you’re waiting to see the doctor until you feel sick, you’re playing a dangerous game with your health.
3) Your health is a great investment. Investing in good health will actually save you a ton of money. When you get sick, especially with a chronic illness, it costs you time and money. Time away from work combined with your medical and pharmaceutical bills can leave you with an insurmountable pile of debt. In fact, study published in the American Journal of Medicine in 2007, showed that illness and medical bills contribute to a large and increasing share of US bankruptcies.3
4) What you don’t know might cost you your life. Plain and simple, seeing your doctor annually might save your life. Chronic disease is known to cause 7 out of every 10 deaths.4 So why take the chance? Even if you don’t have any complaints, the annual exam is a great way to help you maintain good health or get you on track with making important changes in the way you live your life.