It’s Men’s Health Month: How healthy are you?

Taking care of your health at any age is important, but throughout the month of June, anchored by a Congressional health education program, screenings, health education and outreach activities are being pushed to inform men on what they could be at risk for and what they need to improve on as a part of Men’s Health Month.

The goal of this month is to spread awareness of early detection and treatment of health issues among men, encouraging regular check-ups and general education about overall health.

Men’s Health Month is symbolized by the color blue, with Wear Blue Day taking place June 16. People are encouraged to wear blue on this day in support of the Month, creating a better understanding of some of the issues that men face.

Did you know?

  • Heart disease is the leading cause of death among men, with cancer not too far behind.
  • On average, men live five years less than women.
  • Approximately 30,000 men in the U.S. die each year from prostate cancer. Men who lead active lifestyles with prostate cancer have a better survival rate than those who are not active. Regular physical activity has great health impacts on overall health, and men who demonstrate three or more hours of healthy exercise actually lower their risk of prostate cancer by 61 percent.

Bone and joint problems vary by gender, meaning treatment and recovery are different for both men and women. This month, make it a point to set up an appointment if you’re feeling any aches or pains. Not receiving the proper treatment only allows for aliments to worsen.

Below are a few orthopedic conditions that men are at higher risk for.

  • Fractures in their fingers and hands.
  • Complications with osteoporosis and hip fractures, developing conditions like pneumonia and systemic infections after a hip fracture.
  • More likely to have a soft-tissue injury like tears to an Achilles tendon or an arm-muscle injury.
  • Men, as they get older, can develop not only osteoporosis, but also rheumatoid arthritis and thyroid problems.

If you or anyone you know is experiencing any of these orthopedic issues, please contact Campbell Clinic to meet with a physician. For more information, visit our website.

For more information on Men’s Health Month, visit: www.menshealthmonth.org.

Heat or Ice After Injury

Sports medicine physicians often “prescribe” warm or cold compresses after injury. Carefully following your doctor’s instructions about this is key to a successful recovery, especially within the first 48 hours. Below, we’ve outlined when you should – and shouldn’t – apply heat or ice to an injured area.

Heat Compresses

Heat works to bring more blood to the affected area, while reducing joint stiffness and muscle spasms. Applying heat to an injury is not recommended within the first 48 hours or immediately after physical activity, however.

Heat is most commonly used to soothe sore muscles a few hours after exercise. Warm compresses make sense in this instance because when muscles are working, our bodies produce chemical byproducts that lead to soreness when they’re built up in the body. These chemicals are eliminated through increased blood flow, which heat helps to provide.

Several companies manufacture warm compresses, but you can also save money by making your own at home. Dampen a towel with warm water or use a heating pad. Be cautious when applying these directly to your skin, especially If you have nerve damage and/or diabetes.

Cold Packs

Relieve pain from an injured area by applying ice to it. When injury occurs, tissues are damaged. Cold compresses numb the area to minimize tenderness and pain. Cold packs also help reduce swelling and inflammation.

Many athletes will take “ice baths” which are beneficial in preventing inflammation directly after intense exercise.

Ice packs can also be purchased or made at home. Dampen a towel with cold water and freeze it, or put ice in a plastic bag. Place a towel in between the compress and your skin, to avoid risks from direct application.

If you are injured, please contact Campbell Clinic to meet with a physician. For more information about Campbell Clinic, please visit our website.

This blog post was adapted from Johns Hopkins Medicine Health Library.