Men’s Health Month encourages doctor visits

Published 6:44 pm Thursday, June 13, 2013

By Sarah Mahan

The Selma Times-Journal


Monday kicked off the beginning of national Men’s Health Month, which means local health officials are encouraging men to take time out of their busy schedules to seek both medical treatments and preventative medical care.

Jackie Holliday, administrator for public health area that includes Selma, explained the goal of both Men’s Health Week and also the nationwide, month-long men’s health initiative.

“Many illnesses that are common to men can be easily treated or prevented if we can heighten awareness and encourage men to see a physician and get yearly checkups,” Holliday said. “We are seeking to heighten awareness during Men’s Health Week and Men’s Health Month by encouraging men to see their physicians.”

The leading causes of death for Alabama men are heart disease, cancer and accidents, according to the Alabama Department of Public Health. Men have increased health risks for a number of reasons, including being less likely to visit a physician and more likely to engage in risky behaviors and work in high-risk jobs.

Holliday said many men forego health screenings that could prevent and treat illness before they become serious problems and encouraged them to take their health seriously.

“Screenings for prostate cancer and diabetes, cholesterol and other things that lead to heart disease are extremely important screenings that men often choose not to do,” he said. “It’s critically important for men to take account for their own health and visit a physician on a routine basis.”