Men's health awareness month

Published: 2/11/2022

Men's health awareness month aims to encourage boys, men and their families to start conversations to help combat mental illness and prevent further health issues. On average men are dying 5 years earlier than women and for mostly preventable reasons.

Men's health is a global issue with a growing number of men facing life with a prostate or testicular cancer diagnosis, the most common amongst young adult men. Globally, one man dies by suicide every minute of every day, with males accounting for 69% of all suicides.

These are indeed devastating facts nestled inside an already devastating suicide problem. In an effort to shine light on how we can all help, we explore the most common causes of men's health.  

Stress

Stress is experienced when there is an imbalance between what's being asked of us and our ability to cope with the demands. It's the feeling of being under pressure and overwhelmed causing discomfort and distress, leading to other health concerns including anxiety and depression. Stress is commonly associated with working life and can be triggered by home life, social situations, retrenchment or early retirement from a job.   

Depression

Depression is an intense feeling of sadness that has a prolonged effect lasting weeks, months or years. The main causes of depression range  from experiencing grief, losing a loved one, loneliness, family and social economic circumstances.  The emotions linked to depression can interfere with daily life, wellbeing and physical health.   

Anxiety

Anxiety is the most common health issue for men in Australia. It's the feeling of extreme worry or fear about perceived threats, that are usually out of proportion to the reality of the situation. Anxiety is sometimes dismissed for being worried or nervous. It's proven to be a serious condition and can be a debilitating experience that affects daily life and can have an impact on both mental and physical health.

Unfortunately the majority of men are reluctant to talk about their emotions and don't ask for help when they need it. Below are organisations that reflect a breadth of health issues amongst Australian men and striving to make a difference.   

Movember

Movember was established in 2003 and has funded over 1,250 men's health projects globally. Movember helps create awareness for men's mental health and suicide prevention, prostate cancer and testicular cancer. Movember strives to impact men's health research and transform the way health services in Australia reach and support men aiming to draw attention to the emotional and mental wellbeing of men.

Movember strives to be transparent and accountable reporting on each project therefore donors can recognise how their support is changing the lives of men around the world.

To be involved with the charity over November, men can sign up and grow a Moustache to raise money and awareness. Movember helps men live happier, healthier, longer lives addressing the crisis on a global scale.  

Australian Men's Shed Association 

The Australian Men's Shed association (AMSA) is a national service provider supporting more than 1200 men, womens and community sheds, recognised as one of Australia's largest male based community development organisations.

Becoming a member of a Men's Shed provides a safe, inclusive and busy environment where men can come together, bond with one another and work on community projects. The Men's shed movement has become a place to address health, wellbeing and for men to become a valued member of the community.   

Mensline Australia

MensLine Australia is funded by the Australian government department of social services and is Australia's leading professional telephone and online counselling provider offering nurturing support for Australian men to talk. MensLine Australia's team of qualified counsellors are experienced in dealing with men's health issues ranging from mental health, anger management, family violence, substance abuse and relationships. The organisation provides confidentiality, anonymity and non judgemental support through coaching and practical strategies and a number of programs customised to the specific needs of the person.   

 

Top Blokes Foundation 

Top Blokes Foundation was established in 2006 and strives to improve young male health and wellbeing across Australia. Working with boys and young men over a 3 to 6 month period, Top Blokes increases resilience, empathy and respect for themselves and towards others. Top Bloke's goal is to mentor and develop young men's critical thinking and decision making skills.

The preventative, evidence based group mentoring programs work to reduce the rates of suicides, mental health issues, antisocial and hazardous behaviours.

The programs are delivered by qualified and experienced youth workers and have been developed to engage and educate. Top Blokes has contributed to the  improvement in mental health across Australia by an increase of 74% and has impacted over 15,000 young men's lives as of 2022.

One of the key things a person can do to support men's mental health is to speak openly about mental illness and health as many men are suffering in silence.

Through these organisations creating awareness, providing information and strategies, they are making a difference towards men's lives in Australia and across the globe.

#MensHealth #MensHealthAwarenessMonth

By Alana Dintinosante

To find support:

MensLine Australia is a professional telephone and online support and information service for Australian men. Call 1300 78 99 78, 24 hours / 7 days a week. https://mensline.org.au/ 

Australian men's shed Association national service provider male based community development organisation Call 1300 550... https://mensshed.org/

Top Blokes Foundation provides mentoring programs to children and young men. Call 1300 450...  https://www.topblokes.org.au/

Movember is an organisation funding mental health research worldwide and health projects to support men.  1300 GROW MO ( 1300 ... 66) https://mensshed.org/

Beyond Blue provides Australians with information and support to improve their mental health. Call 1300 22 46 36 or visit beyondblue.org.au for more information.

Lifeline Australia provides Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to 24-hour crisis support. Call 13 11 14 or visit lifeline.org.au for more information.

GriefLine listens, cares and supports people experiencing loss and grief, at any stage in life. Call 1300 845 6am to midnight AEST, 7 days a week.

Life Supports Counselling provides Australians with experienced counsellors & psychologists in their local area Australia-wide. Call 1300 735   

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