Dr. Garrett here. On November 1st, myself and Dr. Matt shaved our faces clean and started the month long journey of growing a mustache. Although we both looked self-admittedly dapper, the choice to grow a ‘stache was purely noble. There is an organization called Movember whose sole purpose is to raise awareness and money for men’s health issues, specifically prostate and testicular cancer initiatives. The idea is to use the mustache as a way to start a conversation about men’s health issues in an effort to raise awareness for these often ignored diseases. As walking billboards, or “Mo Bros” as we liked to refer to ourselves, we were able to inform many of our patients, friends, family, and even strangers on the many unknown facts of these diseases (as well as obtain constant admiration for our impressive upper lip fuzz!). For example:
- 1 in 6 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime
- Testicular cancer is the most common cancer in American males between the ages of 15 and 35.
- 6 million people die every year from tobacco use and exposure to tobacco smoke. One person dies every six seconds
- 1 in every 13 men will develop lung cancer
- In 2012, an estimated 13 million or 11.8% of all adult men over the age of 20 in the US have diabetes
- Approximately 76.4 million men and women in the US have high blood pressure- 1 in 5 do not know it
- Researchers estimate that at least 6 million men in the United States suffer from a depressive disorder every year
- Four times as many men commit suicide compared with women
- 24% of men are less likely to go to the doctor compared to women
These are just a few of the facts, but they are all astonishing in their own right, and point towards a shocking trend of many men ignoring their health. As men, we often feel as though we need to be tough and deal with these things on our own. The evidence, however, points to this as being highly damaging and irrational. Thus, raising awareness of men’s health issues is very important. We actually found that the wives of many men we talked to were the best advocates for their husband’s health. Women are much better than men at being advocates for their own health. As it turns out, they’re even better at advocating for men’s health than men are! We call these women, Mo Sistas!
Our hope is to do this every November (or “Movember” as we now call it) and make it bigger and bigger each year. So if you or anyone you know would be interested in joining our team of Mo Bros and Mo Sistas, please let us know. We would love to have you!
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