Men must take more responsibility for their health

The World Health Organisation (WHO) says that, compared to women, men go less frequently to the doctor and report unmet health-care needs less. On top of this, men demonstrate unhealthier smoking practices, unhealthier dietary patterns, higher alcohol consumption levels and a higher rate of injuries than women.

STATSA (Statistics South Africa) list the leading causes of death among men in South Africa as:

  • TB.
  • Forms of heart disease.
  • HIV.
  • Flu and pneumonia.
  • Cerebrovascular disease (e.g. stroke).
  • Diabetes.

It is certainly worth having regular check-ups.

Having your prostate checked by your GP is also very important. Prostate cancer is one of the leading cancers in men worldwide and the number two cause of cancer among men in South Africa.

According to the South African Department of Health, different people have different symptoms for prostate cancer while some do not have any symptoms at all. Some symptoms of prostate cancer can be:

  • Difficulty starting urination.
  • Weak or interrupted flow of urine.
  • Frequent urination, especially at night.
  • Difficulty in emptying the bladder completely.
  • Pain or burning during urination.
  • Blood in the urine or semen.
  • Pain in the back, hips or pelvis.
  • Painful ejaculation.

Early detection of prostate cancer can greatly improve the success of treatment.

It is Men’s Health Month in June but good health is a daily milestone not a monthly event.