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Celebrate Men's Health Month With Annual Health Screening

Image of Celebrate Men's Health Month With Annual Health Screening. June is Men’s Health Month, and Defense Health Agency Public Health officials are reminding males of the importance of taking charge of their health for a longer, happier lifestyle. Regular male health screenings can detect high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, colon cancer, prostate cancer, and/or lung cancer, and allow these conditions to be treated early to produce the best outcomes for health. (Defense Health Agency Public Health graphic illustration by Joyce Kopatch).

June 2024 is Men’s Health Month, and Defense Health Agency Public Health officials are reminding males of the importance of taking charge of their health for a longer, happier lifestyle.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 13.8% of males aged 18 and over are in poor or fair health. Other statistics show that men die an average of five years earlier than women and are at higher risk for serious diseases such as lung cancer, heart disease, and HIV.

And according to a 2022 Health of the Force report, published by Defense Centers for Public Health - Aberdeen, in a survey of 477,000 soldiers, 77% were younger than 35 years old.

“Young service members can easily take their health for granted because of their youthfulness,” said Dr. Raul Mirza, a physician at DHA-PH. “Yet, it is important to have a regular medical check-up because many diseases and chronic conditions are preventable if they are caught early.”

This prevention-first attitude is a staple of public health thinking—especially in the Department of Defense population.

“Prevention is the best way to health,” said U.S. Public Health Service Rear Adm. Brandon Taylor, DHA-PH director. “Rather than treating individuals when they are ill, public health aims to prevent our DOD community from getting sick in the first place.”

Public health officials say that one of the best ways to prevent illness is by taking the time for a routine physical. Routine medical check-ups can detect health issues and allow them to be treated before they become a more serious health issue.

“For men, in particular, regular health screenings can detect high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, colon cancer, prostate cancer and/or lung cancer, and allow these conditions to be treated early to produce the best outcomes for health,” said Mirza.

For soldiers who smoke, it is also important to receive regular medical assessments.

Data reported in the 2022 Health of the Force report demonstrated that 27%of soldiers reported using tobacco products.

“We know that tobacco use can lead to other complications, like heart disease, lung cancer, and delayed wound healing,” said Corey Fitzgerald, who works in the Health Promotion and Wellness Directorate at the Defense Centers for Public Health–Aberdeen.

Public health officials say that your primary care physician can suggest some alternatives and techniques to quit smoking, like YouCanQuit2, the DOD educational campaign to help service members quit tobacco—for themselves and their loved ones—to lead to a healthier life.

In June 2024, in particular, public health officials are encouraging men to visit their doctor and have a full check-up. Those who cannot make it to the doctor’s office in June are encouraged to go at their earliest convenience.

“We celebrate Men’s Health Month once a year, but it’s always the right time to take care of you,” said Mirza.

For more information on men’s health, visit CDC.gov, Health.gov, Health.mil, or the Navy’s Men’s Health resource page.

The Defense Health Agency supports our Nation by improving health and building readiness —making extraordinary experiences ordinary and exceptional outcomes routine.

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Last Updated: June 06, 2024
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