South Australian men are being encouraged to check in on their mates and use this week, Men’s Health Week (June 10-16), to make an appointment for a health check.
SA Health’s Director of Prevention and Population Health Branch, Professor Katina D’Onise, said that improving men’s health is a process that involves men, women, families and health services.
“Men can sometimes use excuses not to go to the GP like they’re too busy, and they assume that everything will be right,” Prof D’Onise said.
“But the reality is that each hour, four men die from conditions that are potentially
preventable, and on average men live five years less than women.
“That’s why it’s so important that men keep on top of their health, not just for themselves, but also their families.
“Men, women, families and health services all need to work together to promote frequent conversations about health.”
As part of the week, a forum will be held at the University of Adelaide on 10 June to challenge and debate key issues in men’s health and discuss the health needs of men around the country.
The forum brings together key health promotion bodies and celebrates the strengths of men, the contributions they make and the ways in which men’s health can be encouraged in the community.
Head of Urology at the Northern Adelaide Local Health Network, Dr John Miller, said there needs to be more conversation about men’s health and awareness weeks such as this are a way to start important conversations.
“Once men are over 40 years of age they need to be proactive about their health and make sure they speak up if something doesn’t feel right,” Dr Miller said.
“Many issues for men, if detected early, can be treated and later complications and consequences could be avoided.
“I encourage men to establish and maintain contact with a healthcare provider; GPs are beautifully placed to be the contact point for many men’s health issues such as cardiovascular, prostate and mental health.”
There are also simple ways that men can improve their health by eating plenty of fruit and vegetables, exercising regularly, not smoking and only drinking in moderation.