“I’m fine.” Hey, Men — how many times have you heard yourself say those two words after a loved one expresses concerns over your health or asks you to schedule a routine health screening? (And then you drop the subject, of course.)
If this sounds like you, you’re not alone. It’s common for men to avoid scheduling a health exam or treating their health issues. According to a 2022 survey of 1,000 U.S. males, 55 percent did not get regular health screenings.
Reasons men avoid health exams
Dr. Joseph Alukal, urologist and director of Men’s Health at New York-Presbyterian/Columbia, says the reasons why men sidestep health exams include a lifelong lack of focus on men’s health. From a young age, men typically aren’t conditioned to make regular doctor visits — unlike young women, he explains.
Another deterrent? Fear of bad news from the health professional. (Ironically, that’s more likely to happen if you avoid regular health checks, right?)
Whether it’s any of these reasons for dodging the doc, or that you simply put loved ones’ care first (and these “loved ones” may even include pets as nearly two in five men put their animals’ health before their own), here’s one important thing to remember:
In order to take care of the ones you love and enjoy life to the fullest, you must take care of yourself.
There’s no better time than Men’s Health Month — which starts today — to check in on your overall well-being if you haven’t already. And a crucial part of that is to get your hearing tested and treat any hearing loss you may have.
Why it’s important to prioritize your hearing health
Preventing future health problems (and likely even more trips to a doctor) is a key reason to see a licensed hearing care professional to evaluate your hearing. Research has linked untreated hearing loss to many issues, including increased risk of falls, employment and salary imbalances, social isolation, depression and dementia. So, it’s crucial to detect and treat hearing loss early.
Plus, life becomes tremendously better when you hear your best, and more men than ever are realizing this. You too can experience the impact of better hearing on your quality of life — being able to enjoy music or TV, feeling part of conversations and activities, and not missing out on life’s joys because hearing loss is holding you back. Some men are even using hearing technology to get an edge in life — it’s true.
Worried about stigma? That’s “old school”, according to legendary singer and songwriter Huey Lewis, who wears hearing aids for Menière’s disease. “Nowadays, if you don’t have two earbuds in your ear, you’re not cool,” he says, adding, “I don’t care whether they do or not, but if you’re worried about whether people see (your hearing aids) or not, most people don’t.”
No more fear — Men’s Health Month is here
Men’s Health Month, a focused time to heighten awareness of preventable health problems in men and encourage early detection and treatment of disease*, is the perfect time to get any hearing issues squared away. And it’s super easy to do, too.
You can start by taking our free online hearing test. Or type your zip code in here and you’ll a find a list of licensed hearing care professionals near you who can test your hearing and consult with you on possible treatment options.
Because is there a better feeling than to say, “I’m fine” and really know it’s true?
But if you still need an extra nudge, listen to what Richard Petty has to say.
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