June is Men’s Health Month, a time to raise awareness for preventable health problems and encourage early detection and treatment of diseases common among men. While people can’t control their genetics, taking a proactive approach to one’s health can reduce the risk of chronic disease and decrease the cost of healthcare.
Despite the many benefits of preventive care, few individuals are engaging in recommended services. In particular, many men are forgoing care and deferring annual health screenings. According to a recent survey, a third of men don’t think they need annual health screenings . Regular health screenings provide vital health insights and enable better healthcare decision-making for better outcomes.
Why many men are not engaging in preventive care
Among adults, men are the least likely to use preventive health services . Although 82% of men try to stay healthy to live longer for friends and family who rely on them, only about 50% engage in preventive care . They often delay blood pressure and cholesterol screenings and routine check-ups, wait longer after symptom onset before seeking care, and underutilize clinically appropriate health services . This underuse of preventive services coincides with shorter life spans and more preventable deaths among men than women .
Various internal and external barriers stop many men from engaging in preventive care. Structural barriers include poor appointment availability, long waiting times, an unwelcoming environment, and a perceived lack of availability of male general practitioners. Internal barriers reported to impact men's help-seeking and engagement include fear and embarrassment, and issues relating to masculinity.
The importance of preventive care for men
Men are more likely to wait until their symptoms worsen before going to the doctor and neglect preventive health screenings. Delaying care can lead to serious health consequences. Improvements in men's health would reduce the economic burden on national economies, costs to health services, the impact of lost productivity in the workplace, and improve quality of life.
Men of all ages should be proactive and engage in preventive screenings and regular health care to stay healthy. Preventive services that men need to stay healthy include Body Mass Index (BMI) screenings, blood pressure checks, cholesterol screenings, colorectal cancer screenings, and age-specific immunizations. Detecting these issues early significantly increases treatment success rates and enhances long-term health outcomes.
How LetsGetChecked can help
While many men are deferring preventive care, making care more convenient and accessible can help encourage greater compliance and engagement. 61% of men said they would be more likely to go to their annual check-ups if seeing the doctor was more convenient for them . LetsGetChecked’s at-home healthcare solutions can make it easy for men to take a proactive approach to their health. Our comprehensive offerings meet your people where they are, enabling them to access the health insights and care they need.