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5 Common Things Men Do to Hurt Their Health

Many men live adventurous and hard working lives and still manage to take good care of themselves. They exercise, eat healthy, and keep a mindful eye on things that will help them stay healthy. Other men however, need a little coaching. Here are six things they need to stop doing in order to live longer

1. Thinking it Won’t Happen to Them

When it comes to the chances of cancer, stroke, or heart-attack, many men believe it can only happen to older men like their father. Younger men can be at risk too when they consider family medical history and current activities. Men with a family history of heart problems can find themselves in a cardiac event as early as their 30s. Prioritizing heart health means not smoking, eating healthy, exercising regularly, and maintaining a healthy body weight.

2. Not Going to the Doctor Regularly

Many men don’t go for their annual health screening that is usually covered in full by their insurance. They make all sorts of excuses and end up not going for years or even decades. This attitude of ‘if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it” doesn’t apply to health though. The path to healthy life centers around regular check-ups. Regular check-ups will provide primary care physicians with the necessary data to determine risks for heart disease, including readings on blood sugar, cholesterol, and blood pressure. High blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar often do not present any symptoms in the early stages, therefore only a doctor can give a proper diagnosis and treatment in order to prevent an avoidable catastrophic health event.

3. Forgetting Sunscreen

Not just men, but anyone who forgoes sunscreen significantly increased their chances of skin cancer. Potentially cancerous spots on the skin may go unnoticed until the advanced stages because many men do not do routine skin checks. The majority of people with melanoma are actually Caucasian men over the age of 50. Men are generally too lax in taking care of their skin and can end up seriously ill.  Early detection is key when it comes to skin cancer and men should do a monthly inspection of their skin and consult their doctor if anything suspicious is found.

4. Ignoring Snoring

Snoring is just a normal thing that everyone does, right? Wrong. Not all snoring is the same. Men that wake up groggy, have morning headaches, are constantly tired, or have sore throats may have a condition called obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). It is far more than just wall-rattling snoring. Many people with OSA stop breathing at night for seconds at a time, and OSA is also linked to heart disease and high blood pressure. An estimated 15 million American men suffer from OSA and it is theorized that many more go undiagnosed. Any man exhibiting these symptoms needs to see a doctor and possibly participate in a sleep study.

5. Using Alcohol as the Answer

Some men are able to cope with a tough day, depression, or anxiety with exercise or meditation. Other men turn to alcohol to find relief from their problems. There are many problems with this coping mechanism when it becomes a habit. Not only is alcohol a depressant and can make your mood worse, it also puts you at risk for more health problems like liver disease. Men are actually twice as likely to develop a drinking problem than women. As with most ailments, the sooner a man can recognize the problem and seek help, the more effective the treatment.

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