Men’s Health Week is an international awareness event that focuses on male health issues. Held on the 15th– 21st of June, it brings attention to the fact that more males diet , have accidents, take their own lives and suffer from lifestyle-related health conditions than females of the same age.
The home doctor experts at House Call Doctor have all the information you need.
How did Men’s Health Week originate?
The US Congress started Men’s Health Week in the United States in 1994 to raise awareness of preventable health problems among men and boys. It also aims to encourage early detection and treatment of disease. In 2002, the 2nd World Congress of Men’s Health was held in Vienna bringing together six leading men’s health organisations. They created “The Vienna Men’s Health Declaration” which set out to:
- Recognise men’s health is a critical issue and that there are health issues which only affect men
- Promote awareness of men’s approach to health
- Create school and community programs which target boys and young men
- Change the way healthcare is provided to be more sensitive towards men’s needs
- Connect health and social policies to better pursue men’s health goals.
Men’s health in Australia
In Australia, Men’s Health Week aims to provide a platform for challenging and debating key issues in men’s health and to raise the profile of men, their health outcomes and health needs. Men take their own lives at four times the rate of women – that’s five men a day on average. Accidents, cancer and heart disease account for the majority of male deaths.
The themes of this year’s Men’s Health Week are:
- Bringing genders together
- Bringing cultures together
- Bringing communities together
- Preventing suicide together.
Engaging men and boys
Improving men’s health outcomes is a multi-layered process involving men, women, families and health services. It’s important that men make their health a priority and make use of health services to preventatively manage their health. It’s equally important for health services to know how to and engage with men.
Here are some tips:
- Be active in seeking medical help
- Talk about any health issues – it’s okay to seek help
- Women – be proactive in helping your men and boys get help if they need.
Medical practitioners also need to find ways to engage men. Here are some tips:
- Find ways to market to men and tailor your services to include men’s needs
- Get to know patients and look out for broader signs of problems
- Reach out and connect with men through community events and organisations
- Work with other health services and professionals to coordinate men’s health initiatives
- Educate men, women and children to understand problems and symptoms that need attention and teach them how to seek medical advice.
What can you do to get involved?
With social distancing measures still in place around the country, you can get involved by sharing a positive message about men in your life on your social media and tag #menshealthweek or host an online event such as a virtual coffee meet. If you need help or need more information, check out these resources:
- MensLine Australia
- Dads in Distress
- SANE Australia