So where do we start on a discussion of men’s health?
Rightfully so, the discussion on men’s health is gaining more and more popularity within the media and the community. Even more so that attention is going towards men’s mental health, where there are some major challenges and issues within our community – the statistics are frightening. Recent events over the last year have highlighted the lack of compliance to our health, both physically and mentally as males. There is still a genuine fear of not being stoic and “she’ll be right mate” when really we may not be feeling all that crash hot.
As an Osteopath let’s talk more specifically about men’s physical health, and how our men in the community view their health and look after themselves. I have been in practice for 21 years as an Osteopath, and the trend remains the same.
The prime motivator within the community in terms of proactive health management is the female. Men like to exercise, men keep fit, but men also ignore warning signs such as pain, which should be looked at proactively in terms of being able to achieve their optimal health. Please keep in mind here I am making generalisations observed over a long period of time and some of you are brilliant at taking care of yourselves. I am talking about trying to get in the head of the majority here and please do not take offence if you do not fit in what I compartmentalise.
Realistically, in practice, men wait until they are in acute pain or crisis. Men ignore the warning signs that are present over days or months that could be addressed so much earlier – whereas females address these indicators very well.
As an Osteopath, and being part of the community, I would encourage men to take better care of themselves.
The old analogy of a man servicing his car and keeping the logbooks up to date is very true. Yet why do men ignore pain and dysfunction that leads to poor health and breakdown?
There are many reasons for this, and again, a lot of those reasons come back to a man’s mental health and not being allowed to appear vulnerable or in need – the two do go hand in hand.
My role, as an Osteopath, is to try to encourage men to try and take better care of themselves. Take control and address issues as they arise, rather than waiting until the situation becomes urgent and therefore effects employment and care of others.
If it is left to this stage, it can require much more treatment from us, or referral out to other specialists, imaging, and therapeutic intervention, which may not have otherwise been needed.
Men’s health – very topical, very interesting, something that I would like us, as males, to do a lot better at.
So let’s talk about it! Talk amongst your male mates, talk it around with your partner and see how you ae measuring up in looking out for number 1. I bet there are many of you, like me, who have people relying on you every single day.
I hope it raises a few eyebrows, I hope it raises a bit of discussion, and I hope it encourages the men out there to come in and chat. Let’s see if we can help you be at your best.
Regards, Peter Parker