Did you know that June is men’s health month?
As we round out this month, I think it’s important to shed some light on the health of men. Fortunately, we are having more and more conversations about men’s health and the need for men to take better care of our physical and mental health. While there have been advances in awareness, we still have a long way to go. Some statistics have actually worsened in recent years. One of them not talked about enough is the increase in suicidal ideation of young Black men (numbers also seem to be trending upward for Black youth overall.
We still have a lot of work to do.
One Barrier to Better Men’s Health
In order to promote the health of men we have to do a better job at creating spaces for men to talk about their concerns and get non-judgmental support. And men need to be more active in taking the personal risk to ask for help and seek support. Of course, this is easier than done. I think that I can speak for most men when I say being vulnerable in this way is an ongoing challenge. But, our health depends on it!
Consider these startling facts on men’s health:
- Heart disease is the number 1 leading cause of death for men overall (CDC).
- 50% of men live with hypertension (CDC).
- 90% of people diagnosed with Schizophrenia by age 30 are men.
- Men account for 35% of people with binge eating disorder.
- 1 in 5 men develop dependency on alcohol in their lifetime
- Men die, on average, 6 years earlier than women (CDC).
- The highest rates of suicide are found in elderly white men.
Sources: Mental Health America and CDC
Since Congress created Men’s Health Week decades ago we’ve seen progress in men taking better care of themselves. But, given these statistics we still have a lot of work to do to take better care of ourselves and better look out for one another. To learn more about how you can take better care of your health or encourage the men in your life, visit menshealthmonth.org and a list of recommended health checks for every age category at Life Span.
To get your mental health check-up, reach out to Viva to get started with therapy today.