This week is International Men’s Health Week. This is the perfect opportunity to become more aware of common male health issues and encourage businesses and institutions to create health policies that will provide much needed support. To do this, Men’s Health Forum are encouraging everyone to give ourselves an MOT.
DIY MAN MOT
Men’s Health Forum has created a DIY MAN MOT to help us keep our health in check. From pulse checks, symptoms checklist, blood pressure, and a quiz to check your mental wellbeing. You can take your MOT on the Men’s Health Forum.
Why do Men Need an MOT?
We’ve focused on navigating our way through the pandemic over the past 2 years which has overshadowed other serious health issues.
Macmillan believe that around 50,000 people have missed a cancer diagnosis during the pandemic. More specifically, prostate cancer diagnosis has decreased around 29% between 2019 and 2020. This is due to men not going to their doctor originally due to the pandemic. However, NHS health checks started again from April this year. In addition, there needs to be more awareness to encourage men to go back to their GP.
Men’s Health Forum believe all of the above should give us even more of a reason to monitor our physical and mental health with an MOT. This involves:
- Check in with yourself! Make sure you are taking note on any differences with your body and mind
- Complete the DIY Man MOT
- Complete the Can DO challenge
- Read the forums Man MOT and Man MOT for the Mind guides
- Get an NHS Health Check
- If you have any concerning symptoms, contact your GP or NHS 111
The Can Do Challenge
The CAN DO Challenge connects the five days of the week with 5 ways to improve mental health and wellbeing. We are all encouraged to choose a way to improve wellbeing each day of Men’s Health Week. The five ways are:
- Connect with other people #connectmonday
The hardest part of the pandemic is not being able to connect with people as much as we would like to. With restrictions being eased, it’s time to meet an old friend for lunch or a walk in the park. You can even give them a call.
- (Be) Active #activetuesday
It’s time to get moving. You would be surprised how a run, walk, swim or trip to the gym can improve your mental health. It gives you a great sense of achievement and clears your head at the same time.
- Notice #noticewednesday
Take notice of the environment around you. Turn off your phone for a couple of hours and fully embrace the great outdoors. This can be as simple as enjoying a coffee in the garden, working on your garden, or going for a walk to take in the nature around you.
- Discover #discoverthursday
Learn something new. Read a book on a new subject, try a new recipe, learn how to do that home improvement task you’ve always wanted to complete.
- Offer #offerfriday
Do something helpful for someone else. This can include volunteering for a local community group like a beach clean up group or local food bank. You can even simply ask a friend how they are doing and if there is anything you can do to help them.
150 Minutes of Exercise a Week
Men are encouraged to complete at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise a week. Exercise is not only great for physical health, it can also help to build a healthier mind-set.
Regular exercise reduces the risk of developing heart disease, stroke and 50% less chance of developing bowl cancer. Exercise can be a great way to release stress and can build self-esteem. It’s sure to make you feel positive afterwards. The NHS suggests men need to take part in exercise with moderate intensity. This can include speed walking, cycling, cleaning the car, and getting involved in sports.
As an employer, you can encourage your employees to improve their physical health. You can do this by giving them free access to the company gym, encourage local employees to walk to work, and even provide discounts for local sport centres. This is a great way to support employees and will ultimately improve moral in the office.
5 a Day
International Men’s Health Week has also made us more aware of how important it is to introduce 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day. This can go hand-in-hand with exercise and ultimately help men lead a healthier lifestyle. Not only does a healthy diet help you to stay in shape, it also gives you more energy for a busy day ahead. It can also strengthen the immune system so less employees will be off work due to illness.
To help your employees to eat healthier, you can fill the canteen with fruit and veg. This will allow your team to enjoy healthy foods whenever they want. You can treat them to a delicious salad on a Friday as a treat to look forward to.
‘Men in unskilled work are 3 times more likely to take their own lives than men in senior management.’
The Men’s Mental Health Forum has released statistics in 2019 that suggest men in unskilled jobs are three times more likely to take their own life in comparison to men in senior roles.
As an employer, it’s important that you take each member of staff’s personal development seriously. You can help employees to complete training courses such as modern apprenticeships and degrees as part of their employment. You can also set up regular team building exercises to show your employees they are important to the company.
To find out more on how to efficiently manage mental health in the workplace, you can read our mental health blog on our website now. You can find more statics related to International Men’s Health week on the forum now. If you would like to learn more, feel free to contact us.