It’s a well-known fact that men are less likely to visit the doctor when faced with a health concern. Toxic masculinity is hugely to blame, implementing the illusion that men should never ask for help. While times are changing (and improving!), some men still struggle to come to terms with asking for help, particularly with regards to their health.
In light of Men’s Health Week, we’re taking it upon us to break the toxic masculinity barrier and start an important conversation. Here are six ways to talk to men about their health, both comfortably and discreetly.
1. Offer To Help Them
For some men, taking time out of a busy schedule to visit the GP is often the biggest hurdle. While you don’t want to undermine them by booking an appointment without consent, you can offer to help them by finding a suitable time when they can visit. Perhaps you can offer to drive them to their appointments or be there for moral support if they’re worried about talking to the doctor.
2. Follow Your Own Advice
Actions are powerful - while it’s all well and good telling other people to go to the doctor, if you’re not prepared to do the same when it comes to your health, you can expect them to heed your advice.
Make sure you schedule annual check-ups, address any health concerns, and attend important screenings. This will set a good example to those around you while keeping your health in good check at the same time.
3. Assess Options
If awkward conversations are too daunting for someone, it might be time to assess alternative options. Luckily, in this day and age, there are many ways to order medication discreetly without coming face to face with another human.
Here at Express Pharmacy, you can complete an online consultation and be issued a prescription on the same day. This allows you to order treatment online, without a doctor's trip becoming a burden to your day. Although discussing any health concern doesn’t need to be an “awkward” matter, having the option to deal with it online benefits many people. Consider discussing this option with the men in your life.
4. Pay Attention To Symptoms
If you know someone quite well, more times than not, it will be easy to tell when something is wrong. While diagnosing someone is only something that health professionals can do, kindly asking if someone is feeling okay can go a long way. Whether it’s a change in mood or signs of discomfort, letting someone know that you’re there will make the world of difference. This may be the first step that makes them open up even more.
5. Let Them Know You’re Concerned
As mentioned previously, showing that you care will go a long way. Avoid being too demanding or assertive when talking about their health; instead, show your concern by checking in and offering support. Remind them that the reason you’re broaching the subject is because you care and want them to be healthy.
6. Highlight the Positives
Above everything else, highlight the positives surrounding talking about health. The sooner that we can banish the taboo, the better. Just a few positives include:
- Encouraging good health
- Improving confidence
- Building closer relationships
- Making it easier to ask for help in the future
While it is down to the man in your life to make the final decision, highlighting the positives of getting help may provide the encouragement they need.
If we all foster open communication surrounding health (while approaching the situation sensitively), we can banish shying away for good. The six tips in this guide are beneficial for both men and women, so if you are concerned about someone in your life, consider giving these approaches a try.