In Support of All Men | International Men’s Health Week
You’re one in 4 billion men. You might be a husband, brother, uncle, or son; and of course, you’re an individual contributor to society. You work, you play, and you shape your surroundings. Whether it’s in the office or out on a little league field, you offer a lot. This week, we celebrate all that you do and all that you are, from your head to your toes.
A few fun facts about men you might not have known:
From the weird and wacky to the undeniably impressive, it’s clear that men’s bodies do a lot. This week, we not only celebrate what they do but we also strategize ways that we can support them — so that you can be your healthiest self and keep contributing to the world.
Happy International Men’s Health Week!
International Men’s Health Week is a worldwide effort, led by the Men’s Health Network, “to increase awareness of male health issues on a global level and to encourage inter- and intra-national institutions to develop health policies and services that meet the specific needs of men, boys, and their families.”
International Men’s Health Week got its start nearly 30 years ago when Senator Bob Dole and Congressman Bill Richardson partnered up with the Men’s Health Network to create a health holiday all about men. Men’s Health Week was officially enacted in 1994, and later, it expanded to include the whole month of June for Men’s Health Month.
Today, Men’s Health Week works to raise awareness of the diseases and illnesses that affect America’s men. By better understanding the conditions and risk factors that men face, the Men’s Health Network maintains that we can implement more effective and prevention treatment options for all men.
As the Network explains, “This week gives healthcare providers, public policymakers, the media, and individuals an opportunity to encourage men and books to seek regular medical advice and early treatment for disease and injury.”
According to the CDC, the top 10 fatal diseases and injuries among men include:
Clearly, men face many risks. From preventable diseases to unintentional injuries to mental health struggles, men are apt to encounter one or more of these conditions in their lifetimes.
The aim of International Men’s Health Week is to educate men about their individual risks, develop strategies to mitigate these risks, and promote healthy lifestyles for all.
Men’s Health Week is celebrated annually during the week ending on Father’s Day.
As the Men’s Health Network explains, “Father’s Day was chosen as the anchor to make use of the extra attention paid to male family members near that holiday.”
This year, Men’s Health Week is taking place from June 13-19, 2022.
In preparation for Men’s Health Week, the Men’s Health Network is offering several resources and promotional tools to spread the word and raise awareness. If you want to be a part of the action, make sure you use them.
If you’re looking to get involved this Men’s Health Week, you should do two main things: 1. check in on your own health, and 2. check in on the health of other men in your life. In order to accomplish these goals, you can:
Less than half of men ages 18 years and older have visited a family doctor in the last year. This year, you don’t have to be just another statistic. Find a local primary care physician who can ensure that you’re healthy and up-to-date on all of your records.
Depending on your age, risk factors, and individual health status, you’ll need to get routine examinations done every year or every few years. The most common exams include colon and prostate cancer screenings.
If you haven’t already, schedule any outstanding examinations. Taking a simple test can save your life.
Suicide is the eighth leading cause of death among men in the United States. Men are 3.7 times more likely to die by suicide than women. As such, it’s important that you check in on yourself and seek mental health services when you need them.
If you’re not sure where to start, you can use SAMHSA’s Behavioral Treatment Servies Locator to find mental health facilities and get matched with a mental health professional near you. To reach someone more quickly, you can use SAMHSA’s National Helpline or NAMI’s HelpLine.
Or, in the event of an emergency, you can always call on the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255).
1 in 3 men are overweight, putting them at risk for a number of health problems. Talk to your doctor or your local independent pharmacist to find a tailored treatment plan that can help you reach a healthy weight and stay at that weight.
Physical activity is one of the best ways to lose weight and enhance your health. Create a weekly activity plan to get in 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise and 2 days of strength training every week.
90% of all illness and disease is related to stress. If you want to keep yourself healthy, you have to handle your stress accordingly. Schedule quiet time, read a book, or take a walk around the park to reframe your mind and invite a bit of peace and quiet into your routine.
Every Friday before Father’s Day (which, this year, is June 17), people all around the world take part in “Wear Blue Day” to show support to the men and boys in their lives.
Next Friday, plan to don a blue t-shirt and a pair of blue jeans, then encourage others to do the same. To learn more about Wear Blue Day, visit here.
If you want to get your community involved in Men’s Health Week, you can plan a health fair or mini health fair at your work, community center, church, library, or hospital. Health fairs typically include health screenings, fitness demonstrations, and healthy cooking demonstrations.
To get a few tips on how you can plan your health fair, click here.
Even if you can’t host a health fair, you can still spread the word about Men’s Health Week by passing out, or setting out, promotional materials in your area. You can hang up flyers, hand out brochures, distribute newsletters, and ask other organizations around you to do the same.
Click here to access promotional materials directly from the Men’s Health Network.
As you take time for your health this week, and as you promote healthy habits in other men, don’t forget to share your efforts with others. You can use the hashtag #menshealthweek on social media to share your photos, videos, story, and most importantly, your support.
This week and every week, you owe it to yourself to stay healthy. During International Men’s Health Week, take some time to check in on yourself, your family, your friends, and other men in your community.
Together, we can create a healthier world for all — one man at a time.