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Why do so many men skip regular health checkups?


Jun. 9, 2022 Medical News Today

According to a national survey conducted in early May 2022 in the United States, one-third of men do not think they need annual health screenings.

Close to two-thirds of the individuals surveyed believe they are “naturally healthier than others in general.” Furthermore, almost two out of five of the participants shared that they often turn to social media for medical advice.

The Harris Poll conducted this online survey for Orlando Health in Orlando, FL. The market research and consulting firm interviewed 893 U.S. adult males aged 18 and older.

Dr. Thomas Kelley, family medicine specialist at Orlando Health Physician Associates, is certain that most of these men are deceiving themselves. He notes that “[i]t is statistically impossible for the majority of men to be healthier than the majority of men.”

According to Dr. Kelley: “Even if you think you’re healthy and you’re not experiencing any symptoms, there can be developing issues that often go unnoticed and can also be life-threatening if left unchecked [including] rising blood pressure that can be a ticking time bomb for a heart attack or stroke, as well as colon cancer, which is one of the most deadly yet preventable cancers that exist.”

The real picture

Although a substantial proportion of the men surveyed believe that they are healthier than most other men, the facts tell a different story.

As Dr. Kelley warned, the National Vital Statistics Reports say that heart disease and cancer are the leading causes of death among men in the U.S.

And according to the Centers for Disease Control and PreventionTrusted Source (CDC):

  • 13.2% of men in the U.S. aged 18 and older are in “fair or poor” health
  • 14.1% of men aged 18 and older smoke cigarettes
  • 40.5% of men aged 20 and older have obesity
  • 51.9% of men aged 20 and older have high blood pressure and/ or were taking medicine for hypertension
  • men in the U.S. die an average of 5 years earlier than women.
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