FALLS CHURCH, Va. — June is Men’s Health Month. This month-long observance is an opportunity for men to take command of their health. Taking preventive steps and making changes to your lifestyle can improve your health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the leading causes of death among men in the U.S. include heart disease, cancer, respiratory diseases, and stroke.
Here are a few tips for men to improve their health in time for Father’s Day:
- Recognize Preventable Health Problems Early - Be aware of potential health concerns, even if you aren’t sick or injured. Your doctor can help you identify problems, like being overweight, or experiencing depression or anxiety. So it’s important to see a doctor or health care professional for regular checkups and preventive screenings. Also, review your family health history. Your provider can assess your risk of disease based on your family history and other factors.
- Get Regular Screenings - TRICARE covers clinical preventive services. You can get one Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Examination each year if enrolled in TRICARE Prime or TRICARE Select. Your doctor can help you decide what tests you need based on your age and risk factors. Important health screening tests for men include:
- Blood pressure screening
- Cardiovascular screening
- Colorectal cancer exams
- Prostate cancer exams
- Skin cancer exams
- Testicular cancer exams
- Speak Openly with Your Provider - Establish a working relationship with your doctor. Also, don’t be afraid to talk to him or her honestly about your health concerns. Honest doctor-patient communication can prevent misdiagnoses and unnecessary tests. If you don’t have a primary care manager or need help finding a doctor, visit Find a Doctor on the TRICARE website.
- Make Healthy Lifestyle Choices - Get adequate sleep, exercise regularly, and eat healthy balanced meals to stay in control of your mental and physical health. If you’re depressed, seek help. Depressed men may appear to be angry or aggressive instead of sad, making it more difficult to recognize symptoms. Learn about TRICARE’s mental health coverage.
- Minimize Risky Behavior - If you smoke or use other tobacco products, ask your doctor to help you quit. Smoking can cause conditions, such as heart disease and cancer – top two leading causes of death among men. If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation. Drinking too much can contribute to poor health. For resources to help you quit smoking check out TRICARE Tobacco Cessation Services. Also, visit the TRICARE Alcohol Awareness page for information about alcohol and drinking responsibly.
Check out the TRICARE monthly tips on the Healthy Living page for more information and resources about your health.