Men’s Top Health Concerns
09/ 06/ 2016
Let’s Discuss About Men’s Top Health Concerns
Most men have hair on their backs, whether it’s just a little, or a lot. For men who wish to have a hairless back, there are many options available. For temporary results, waxing, hair removal creams, or shaving can rid you of your back hair. For a more permanent solution, laser hair removal can either thin or remove back hair entirely.
As men age they tend to gain weight, with much of it settling in the middle. Often referred to as a “beer belly,” a widening waist, especially over 40 inches, can raise the risk of heart disease. However, proper diet and exercise can help reduce the waistline, and the risk for related health problems.
Men sweat more than women, but some men sweat more overall. Excessive sweating, or hyperhidrosis, usually affects the areas we tend to sweat most: the armpits, palms of the hands, and soles of the feet. Consult your doctor if this is a problem for you; treatments may be available to help you stay dry.
Testosterone, a male hormone, is what causes men to have more body hair than women. This can also cause what is referred to as “unibrow,” or eyebrows so thick they meet in the center and appear to form one brow. Many men opt for electrolysis to ensure a permanent solution and two distinct brows. For a temporary fix, waxing done every four to six weeks can shape the brows.
You shave to get smooth skin, but sometimes small red bumps may appear after shaving. Razor bumps, also called pseudofolliculitis barbae, form when hairs curl back into themselves and grow into the skin. You can prevent razor bumps by taking a hot shower before shaving to soften the hairs and open the pores, using thick shaving gel, not stretching the skin when shaving, shaving in the direction the beard grows, and holding a cold wet cloth against your face after shaving.
Male pattern baldness occurs in many men. Men start to notice their hair thinning and a receding hairline in their 30s, and by their 50s many men may be significantly bald. There are a number of ways to treat hair loss, including prescription medications and surgical hair restoration.
Being colorblind means you do not see colors normally. This condition affects about 1 in 10 men, and most commonly there is an inability to distinguish red and green colors. There is no treatment for color blindness, however, there are special contact lenses and glasses that may help wearers identify colors more easily. It is a lifelong condition and most men learn to adjust without difficulty.
Snoring affects about 44% of men, making it more common in men than in women. It can be affected by the position in which you sleep, medications you take, alcohol you have ingested, or underlying medical conditions. It also can be a sign of a serious sleep disorder called sleep apnea, in which the sufferer stops breathing for short periods during sleep. If snoring disrupts your sleep, consult your doctor to rule out any medical conditions.
Body odor comes from bacteria that thrive in a moist, warm environment. When we sweat, our skin becomes a breeding ground for bacteria and we may give off an unpleasant body odor. Stinky foods such as garlic and onions may also be culprits. Usually, a shower, clean clothes, and antiperspirants will rid you of body odor.
Athlete’s foot (tinea pedis) is a fungal infection that affects the feet and toes, causing itchy, red, cracked, tender, and scaly skin. Blisters also may form. It also can spread to the groin or inner thighs (jock itch). It is treated with topical antifungal creams, and in severe cases a doctor may prescribe oral medications. To prevent infections, keep the feet clean and dry, use athlete’s foot powders, wear open shoes when possible, and use foot protection at the gym or in public showers.
Bad breath, or halitosis, can be caused by smoking or eating strong-smelling foods, but most often it is caused by bacteria in the mouth. Proper dental hygiene including tooth brushing, flossing, and mouthwash can usually get rid of the offending odors. Several underlying medical conditions such as gum disease, dry mouth, acid reflux, sinusitis, or diabetes can cause bad breath. If your symptoms of bad breath persist even with proper oral care, contact your doctor or dentist.
Male sexual dysfunction may make you feel embarrassed, but the truth is by age 40 nearly 40% of all men have experienced some kind of sexual dysfunction including decreased libido, premature ejaculation, or an inability to get or maintain an erection (erectile dysfunction, or ED). Often sexual dysfunction in men is related to an underlying condition, smoking, or medications you are taking. Talk to your doctor if you experience sexual problems to rule out diabetes, heart disease, neurologic conditions, or circulation problems.
As men age, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), or enlarged prostate, is a common problem. The prostate is a gland that surrounds the urethra, and when it is enlarged it can cause symptoms including the feeling of needing to urinate more often or more urgently, or frequent nighttime urination. Talk to your doctor about behavioral modifications or medications to help relieve symptoms of an enlarged prostate.