It’s International Men’s Health Week, intended to raise awareness of health issues that particularly affect men across the globe.
Everyone benefits from keeping an eye out for unexpected symptoms, but research from Boots shows that British guys are less likely to visit their GP than women. And there are health problems that men in particular need to be aware of.
Some guys may be keener to browse sex sites than health ones. So we’re leaving this short list here in the hope that, in between viewing our erotic stories and shiny sex tech, visitors might pick up some simple tips that could be lifesaving for themselves or their loved ones.
And yeah, all of these men’s health issues can affect sex life. In fact, in some cases early symptoms may be ones you notice in the bedroom first.
Men’s health issue 1: diabetes
This year Men’s Health Week is focused on diabetes, a condition that affects one man in ten. While people of all genders get diabetes, men are more often affected, more likely to die from it, and experience more complications like leg amputation.
Another common diabetes side effect in men is erectile dysfunction. It rarely gets talked about, though, even though it’s an important quality of life issue. We covered this in detail in this post.
So if you get symptoms like having to urinate a lot, being incredibly thirsty, and feeling very tired, go see your doctor.
Men’s health issue 2: depression
Suicide kills more men aged under 45 in the UK than any other condition. According to mental health charity Calm, men may find it more difficult to seek help for mental health problems because they feel under pressure to appear strong and in control, and think it’s wrong to reveal signs of ‘weakness’. To try to address this, Calm has a helpline aimed at men (0800 585858) and a webchat site.
If you’ve been feeling down more than usual, try out this NHS depression self-assessment tool which will help you work out if you need to see your doctor.
Mental health problems can have a huge impact on your sex life too, which we wrote about here.
Men’s health issue 3: erectile dysfunction
Erectile dysfunction is a notoriously difficult topic for men to discuss (witness the media fascination when Sir Ian Botham raised the issue back in 2016). But if you have consistent problems getting it up (not just after a few too many drinks), it’s important that you make that appointment. Not only is sexual enjoyment often important for general wellbeing, but (according to the NHS) ED can also be a sign of health conditions like high blood pressure, hormone imbalance, mental health problems and even prostate cancer. Don’t panic – it can also be caused by simple issues like stress or tiredness – but better to be safe than sorry.
Men’s health issue 4: prostate cancer
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer of men in the UK, with 40,000 new cases a year. It’s more likely to develop if you’re over 50 or have a close relative who’s developed the condition. Get it checked out if you find that you’re passing urine more often, going to the toilet often in the night, finding it difficult to urinate or feeling more urgency about it.
If you do develop prostate cancer and get treated for it, erectile dysfunction is a common side-effect. We wrote about this topic in detail here.
Men’s health issue 5: heart disease
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in men in the US and the UK. Being a smoker, having high blood pressure and high cholesterol make you more likely to develop heart disease. Visit your doctor to be screened for heart disease risk if you’re over 40 or have a family history of early heart disease. You can also check your heart disease risk using this online tool from the British Heart Foundation.
So anyway. We hope that was useful. Back to the smut!
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