Men and health: The stigma behind men, doctor visits could cause 'serious consequences'

Men and health: The stigma behind men, doctor visits could cause 'serious consequences'
Updated: Jun. 11, 2018 at 5:52 AM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - It's time to take a quiz and it has only one question.

True or false: Men are wimps when it comes to taking care of their health?

If the answer is true, that might explain, in part, why a man's life expectancy is shorter than a woman's. The fact is, men visit the doctor less frequently than women.

Dr. Jason Boothe is a family physician with Novant Health in Charlotte. "I wouldn't put it as wimps...I wouldn't call us wimps," Boothe said. "But I would say women are definitely stronger when it comes to seeking professional health care."

So what is the problem? Why don't men go to the doctor as often as women?

"Men, there's a stigma, on going to a physician. And so men, and I think it's an external thing as we try to make it, but it's an internal thing where, 'hey, I'm okay' or, 'this is not gonna last long' or 'this just happened one time, it's not gonna happen again. I'll get over this.  I got over this in the past, I'll get over this now,'" Dr. Boothe said.  "And so there's a big stigma placed on seeking help. And men don't like to seek help. 'I don't really like to seek help. I like to do things on my own.' Definitely, I think that's what makes us who we are. But in the case of health, you really have to have a team approach.  You really have to have someone to help you. Help you and guide you. And someone to listen to you."

That stigma, as Dr. Boothe called it, could have serious consequences for your health, men!

This week is recognized around the world as Men's Health Week.

So each day this week, we're going to be taking a look at top health issues men face and talk to experts about what you can do to live a healthier lifestyle. By the way, women play a significant role in that and we'll explain how.

Tune in Tuesday to find out the number one killer of men and what you can do to avoid it or at least catch it early enough so that it can be treated successfully.

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