It’s fair to say that talking about their problems isn’t something that comes easily to the male of the species. We learn that illness or health issues are weaknesses, and it’s unmanly to complain about them from an early age. Man-flu aside, of course. But this behaviour ends up being destructive.
While you are young and healthy, sure, you might never need to see a doctor. But when you hit middle age, your body becomes a lot more vulnerable to illness, weight gain, and a whole host of other problems. And, of course, at this point, you have already learned not to talk – which means conditions go undiagnosed.
The truth is, it’s far better to discuss your problems with a doctor or family member. Your life will be longer because of it – and far happier. Here are a few of the issues you should never be embarrassed or ashamed of discussing.
If there is one problem that men are terrible at talking about, it’s mental health. Things like depression don’t affect real guys, right? Well, around four out of every ten men in the UK that suffer from depression refuse to talk to anyone – whether a family member of professional. Given that nearly eight out of ten men have suffered from anxiety, stress or depression, that is a lot of damaged minds we are talking about. And suicide is the biggest killer of men around the world. As a fitness lover, I’m well aware of the ability of exercise to improve your mental health and calm anxiety. But it won’t work on its own to fix major episodes, which is something I think men struggle with. So, if you are feeling down, depressed, or anxious – please reach out to someone. Men are under an increasing amount of pressure these days, and you need that space to talk.
I know plenty of guys who suffer from injury yet still refuse to go to the doctor. They rest up for a couple of weeks, and then start training again without any treatment. The result? Even worse injuries and the cycle begins again. It’s another example of men believing that admitting you have hurt is a sign of weakness. And it’s utterly ridiculous. First of all, there is no point of training until you have proper treatment on your injury. You will never get the right form back, and you run the risk of injuring other parts of your body, too. Second of all, as you get older, you will suffer more injuries. If you want to keep fit, healthy and active, you need to limit the length of time you spend recovering, And the only way to do that safely is to get the correct treatment and solve your problems one at a time.
Sexual issues are another big no-go area for men. Again, we learn all this macho stuff about sex as kids, and it leaves its mark. Everyone needs to be the alpha male, with the longest staying power and the largest number of notches on the bedpost. But this kind of behaviour leaves a big impact in later life. The guy you knew in your early twenties who slept with hundreds of women is probably an incubator for dozens of STDs right now. The staying power you had in your teens is going to be significantly reduced by the time you are fifty. And even if you have problems in this particular area, you can get help by talking about it with your doctor. You can take Priligy tablets for premature ejaculation, for example, or do some exercises to improve things. Finally, make sure you are checking for testicular and prostate cancers. They are one of the biggest killers, and early intervention can often lead to a better outcome.
Men die earlier than women – that’s a fact. Men also suffer from late stage diagnosis a lot more than women. There is a link between these two statistics. When the majority of women feel ill, they go and see their doctor. When men feel sick, they don’t. If they do, it’s usually due to their wife arranging an appointment. It’s no surprise then, that by the time men are diagnosed with anything the condition has progressed much further. And, the result is often less than positive. So, all you guys out there, going to the doctor is not a sign of weakness. It’s just like putting your car in for its MOT. Or oiling your chainsaw. Or any other manly maintenance problem you can think of. Book your appointment tomorrow and it might just save your life.