This month we are celebrating Men’s Health Month and honoring Fathers everywhere on Father’s Day. What better gift can we give to the men in our lives than to provide the resources and tools they need to get or stay healthy? This Father’s Day I want to make sure my father and my husband are in the best possible health.
According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, men are 24 percent less likely than women to have visited a doctor within the past year.
The Consequences of Neglecting Health are Serious
In a report by Harvard Health Publications, the National Center for Health Statistics finds that men die younger than women, and they are more burdened by illness during life. They fall ill at a younger age and have more chronic illnesses than women.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the leading causes of death for men are:
- Heart Disease
- Unintentional injuries
- Chronic lower respiratory diseases
- Influenza and pneumonia
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Chronic liver disease
Resources and Tools to Get or Stay Healthy
Getting or staying healthy begins with a visit to a primary care doctor. A primary care doctor who is part of an NCQA recognized patient centered medical home (PCMH) has the resources to provide coordinated care with a full range of comprehensive services provided by a team of health care professionals. In a PCMH, the team shares the responsibility of patient care, allowing the doctor to have more time to get to know all about the patient. This allows you to build trust with your doctor and talk about anything that’s bothering you physically, emotionally and spiritually. That’s important as problems in any of these areas can impact overall health.
Something to add to Your Father’s Day Card
Along with the loving sentiments, here’s a list you can give the father in your life:
- If you don’t have a primary care doctor, find one. Go to your health plan website and search for a primary care doctor.
- Check out the Men’s Health Network website for more information and a set of guidelines for checkups and screenings.
- Don’t overwork – stress is a leading cause of illness
- And yes you’ve heard it before, a good diet and regular exercise really makes a difference.
I think the promise of good health is far more valuable than a watch any day. Happy Father’s Day!