Preventative Health to Maintain Your Health & Wellness

June is Men's Health Month, which is a perfect time to focus on the importance of maintaining good health and wellness. One of the most effective ways to stay healthy is by keeping up with regular health screenings. These screenings can detect potential health issues early, when they are often easier to treat. Here's a guide to the essential health screenings every man should consider.

1. Blood Pressure Check

High blood pressure, or hypertension, is often called the "silent killer" because it typically has no symptoms but can lead to serious health problems like heart disease and stroke. Men should have their blood pressure checked at least once a year.

2. Cholesterol Test

High cholesterol levels can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. Men over 35 should have their cholesterol levels checked every three to five years, or more frequently if they have risk factors like obesity, diabetes, or a family history of heart disease.

3. Diabetes Screening

Type 2 diabetes is a major health concern that can lead to complications such as heart disease, kidney failure, and blindness. Men should get screened for diabetes if they have high blood pressure or cholesterol, or if they are overweight. Typically, this screening is recommended every three years starting at age 45.

4. Colorectal Cancer Screening

Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in men. Screening for colorectal cancer usually begins at age 45 and can involve several different tests, including colonoscopy, fecal occult blood test (FOBT), and sigmoidoscopy. Men with a family history of colorectal cancer may need to start screening earlier.

5. Prostate Cancer Screening

Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers in men. Screening typically involves a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test and a digital rectal exam (DRE). The decision to start screening should be discussed with a healthcare provider, considering factors such as age, family history, and overall health.

6. Lung Cancer Screening

Men who are current or former heavy smokers should discuss lung cancer screening with their doctor. Low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) is a type of scan that can help detect lung cancer early. This screening is generally recommended for men aged 55-80 with a significant smoking history.

7. Testicular Cancer Screening

Testicular cancer is most common in younger men, particularly those aged 15-35. While there's no standard screening test for testicular cancer, men should perform regular self-exams to check for any unusual lumps or changes and report these to their doctor promptly.

8. Skin Cancer Screening

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. Men should regularly examine their skin for new moles or changes to existing moles, and see a dermatologist for a professional skin exam, especially if they have a history of excessive sun exposure or tanning.

9. Bone Density Test

Men are less likely than women to develop osteoporosis, but it still poses a significant risk, especially for men over 70 or those with risk factors such as long-term steroid use or a family history of the disease. A bone density scan can help detect osteoporosis early.

10. Vision and Hearing Tests

Regular vision and hearing tests are essential, particularly as men age. Vision tests can detect conditions like glaucoma and cataracts, while hearing tests can identify early hearing loss.

11. Mental Health Screening

Mental health is just as important as physical health. Men are often less likely to seek help for mental health issues, but regular screenings for depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions can make a significant difference in overall well-being.

Staying on top of these essential health screenings can help men lead healthier, longer lives. During Men's Health Month, take the opportunity to schedule any overdue screenings and encourage the men in your life to do the same. Early detection is key to effectively managing and treating many health conditions. Make your health a priority today!

It is always important to have confidence in a medical team who supports you. If you are working toward better health, our team at Healthstar Physicians Premier Medical wants to be on your team. We provide osteopathic medicine as well as family medicine, obesity medicine and podiatry. We are taking new patients at our two offices in Newport and our Sevierville office. And we accept most forms of insurance. To make an appointment in one of our Newport offices or our Sevierville office, please contact us.  

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