“Man up” and get checked

06/05/24  12:45 PM PST
"Man up" and get checked

No one enjoys going to the doctor, but attending annual appointments is a crucial part of maintaining your health and significantly reduces the risk of any health issues going unnoticed.


Men are not going to their doctors enough

There is a common idea that men are ‘supposed to be tough’, but this outdated stigma is putting millions of men at risk. According to a recent study by the Cleveland Clinic, more than half of men don’t regularly see a doctor, going only when they are seriously ill.

Men should be getting screened for:

  • Prostate exam: Men should begin screening at age 50 for the average-risk male.
  • Colorectal exam: Average adults (including women) should have colorectal screenings beginning at age 45.
  • Blood pressure: Blood pressure should be checked at every appointment, or at least every two years.
  • Cholesterol level test: Men should begin yearly checks by age 25.
  • Skin cancer screening: Monthly self-checks and every three years by a physician.
  • Testicular cancer exam: Men should have their testicular exam yearly during their physical.
  • Diabetes test: Starting at age 45, diabetes should be screened for every three years.
  • Glaucoma test: Men under the age of 40 should be tested every two to four years. Men aged 40 to 64 should be tested every one to three years, while men over the age of 65 should be tested every six to twelve months.

The above ages and frequencies are the minimum recommended screenings in the U.S. If you have a family history of certain diseases or conditions, are experiencing symptoms, or are otherwise considered high-risk, you should discuss these time frames with your medical team.

These check-ups are crucial for early detection of health issues. Screenings may even detect a disease you do not suspect is there. This early detection can allow for treatment while a health condition is curable and/or before irreversible complications arise.


What are the main health issues for men?

  • Cardiovascular disease: Cardiovascular disease increases your risk for heart attack and stroke, which are the two leading causes of death among men.
  • Diabetes: More men die of diabetes than women. The death rates for men are 31.2 per 100,000 people vs. 19.5 per 100,000 for women.
  • Skin cancer: In every age group, men are less likely than women to apply SPF products. This causes men to have higher rates of skin cancer and usually experience worse outcomes after a diagnosis.
  • Prostate cancer: On average, one in eight men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime.
  • Testicular cancer: Testicular cancer is the most common cancer in men ages 15 to 35.
  • Colorectal cancer: Men are more commonly diagnosed with colorectal cancers (colon and rectal). Overall, the lifetime risk of developing colorectal cancer is about 1 in 23 for men and 1 in 25 for women.
  • Alcohol-related issues: Men consume alcohol more often and in much greater amounts than women — and that’s a truth that comes with increased health risks, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
  • Mental health: Although mental health conditions do not discriminate based on gender, some mental health issues are particularly prevalent among men.
  • Respiratory illness: According to the American Lung Association, men are more likely than women to be diagnosed with lung cancer, diagnosed with mesothelioma, contract pneumonia, and develop idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).

While some of the above health concerns are male-specific, most affect both genders.

However, for most of these, mortality rates are significantly higher for males than females. The reasons behind this longevity gap aren’t fully understood, but a major concern is that men are less likely to visit the doctor, thus not receiving treatment as quickly.


Men’s Health Week is a much-needed reminder for males to schedule their annual check-ups and a time to encourage their male friends, family, and coworkers to get regular screenings, and openly discuss medical issues. There is no better way to “man up” than getting checked today.

Recent Caregivers

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *