Tag Archives: prevention

June is Men’s Health Month

Men's Health Month

We all know that men visit their doctor less often than women, but did you know that, according to a 2014 survey by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men are 50% less likely than women to have visited a doctor during the course of a two-year period. Additionally, men are three times more likely to admit going five years without a visit and twice as likely to admit that, as an adult, they had never seen a doctor or health professional. The result? While a number of factors are probably involved—men tend to take a greater number of risks, and have more dangerous professions than women—women on average, live seven years longer than men and are less likely to die from eight of the top ten causes of death in the U.S.

With statistics like these in mind, President Bill Clinton signed a bill in 1994 recognizing the third week in June as National Men’s Health Week. Celebrating men’s health throughout the month of June quickly followed suit. The goal of Men’s Health Month is to “heighten the awareness of preventable health problems and encourage early detection and treatment of disease among me and boys.” Men’s Health Month also presents many groups and organizations, such as health care providers, public policy makers, the media, corporations and individuals, with the opportunity to urge both men and boys to obtain regular medical advice and early treatment for diseases and injuries.

Awareness – Prevention – Education – Family

It is always important to be aware of the lifestyle choices we make and the way those choices impact the quality of our lives long term. Raising awareness means…

  • Consciously making healthy lifestyle choices that positively affect the foods you eat and the amount of daily exercise you get.
  • Scheduling regular annual visits with your doctor or primary care professional. Many health conditions can be prevented or detected early with regular checkups and screenings.
  • Educating yourself about the diseases that disproportionately affect men—diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease
  • Starting basic healthcare conversations with your friends and family and discussing the health issues that you encounter.

Wear BLUE

This year, Wear BLUE Day is Friday, June 16. Wear BLUE Day was created by the Men’s Health Network with the twin goals of raising awareness about men’s need to seek regular check-ups and of raising money for education about diseases such as testicular cancer, prostate cancer and the other health issues that primarily affect men. “Wear BLUE Day is celebrated by private corporations, government agencies, sports teams, and individuals to show their concern for the health and wellbeing of boys and men.

For more access to men’s health resources or for more information on Wear BLUE, National Men’s Health Week and National Men’s Health Month, please visit: www.menshealthmonth.org or the Men’s Health Network at: www.menshealthnetwork.org.

ask-the-espert-logo

Ask the Expert: Preventing Colon Cancer

with Dr. Shaun Melarvie, surgeon at Door County Medical Center Surgical Services

Excluding skin cancers, colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed in both men and women in the United States. It is also one of the most avoidable and preventable. Colonoscopy, a procedure which allows your doctor to look at the inner lining of your large intestine, is the current “gold standard” for the detection and prevention of colon cancer.

Q: When do I need a colonoscopy?

Dr. Melarvie: For most people, a first annual colonoscopy is recommended at age 50. However, if you have a family history of colon cancer, talk to your doctor, as you should have a colonoscopy at a younger age.

Q: Should I be nervous about the procedure?

Dr. Melarvie: No, colonoscopy is a common procedure and the technology has advanced greatly in recent years. With more efficient “preps,” most patients are surprised at how easy the procedure is. Colonoscopy is a well-tolerated procedure that causes less bloating and discomfort than ever.

Unlike most hospitals, DCMC has full-time anesthesiologists who participate in the procedure and focus completely on the patient. The results are worth it: removing non-cancerous polyps is part of the procedure, which can prevent colon cancer.

Q: What if I don’t want a colonoscopy?

Dr. Melarvie: There are a variety of non-invasive tests that can be effective, including stool testing and virtual colonoscopy. Your surgeon will work with you to determine the best test for your medical history and personal preferences.

Q: Do I need to travel to get this test?

Dr. Melarvie: The surgeons at Door County Medical Center have been performing this procedure for more than 30 years, with excellent results. In fact, our polyp detection rate is greater than the national standard. And having the test close to home increases comfort and efficiency for the patient.

American Diabetes Month Spotlights Prevention

November is National Diabetes Month. It’s also Thanksgiving, a time when Americans typically load their tables – and their plates – with a variety of foods. Ministry’s expert nutritional team can help you learn how to prepare and plan for delicious, nutritious meals that satisfy and also keep you healthy.

Carmen Schroeder, RDN, CDE is a certified diabetes educator. Along with her colleague, Ruth Norton, RN, CDE she works with primary care providers to offer diabetes education to patients, both one-on-one or in diabetes education classes. “It’s very fulfilling to help people, whether they’ve been dealing with a diabetes diagnosis for years or are newly diagnosed, to be the healthiest they can while still enjoying one of life’s great pleasures –food.”

Ministry Door County Medical Center is the only diabetes education program in the state recognized by the American Diabetes Association. “Our trained experts help patients with the three most important aspects of diabetes management: diet and managing carbohydrate intake, exercise and physical activity, and self-monitoring,” says Schroeder.

With more than 30 million Americans living with Diabetes, and 86 million managing prediabetes, it’s more important than ever to be aware of ways to manage and prevent this disease.

“Eating well is one of life’s greatest pleasure, and enjoying healthy, delicious food helps with diabetes management,” says Schroeder. “In addition to a healthy meal, why not make an after-dinner walk, hike or outdoor game part of your routine?”

MDCMC will offer a diabetes education course in December.  Taught by Certified Diabetes Instructors, the course is a series of three one-hour classes with topics including setting nutrition goals: carbs and diabetes, heart healthy dining, and understanding and managing your diabetes.  For more information, call 746-0510.