10 Health Signs Men Should Never Ignore. By Craig Cooper.
Men sometimes have a way of ignoring things. For example, at this very moment your body may be sending you warning signals. Are you keeping your partner awake at night because your snoring sounds like a freight train? Are you wearing bigger shirts to cover up man boobs?
These and other signs could be indicators of life-altering conditions. However, if you dismiss them as an annoyance or something that will “go away,” you could be seriously jeopardizing your health, now and in the future. It’s time to pay attention to your body. Here are 10 health signs men should never ignore and why.
Excessive snoring could be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea.
This sleep disorder involves the muscles in your throat, which relax and block your airway intermittently while you sleep. Undiagnosed sleep apnea can lead to a lung condition called pulmonary hypertension, which in turn is associated with abnormal heart rhythms and heart failure. Men are more prone to obstructive sleep apnea than women, especially men who are overweight and/or who have type 2 diabetes.
Erectile dysfunction could indicate heart disease and diabetes.
Your bedroom challenges could be a warning sign of heart problems as well as type 2 diabetes. Let’s look at the heart first. The connection between your penis and your heart is blood: both require a reliable, strong blood supply to function properly, so if you are having erectile difficulties, it could be a sign that your cardiovascular health is compromised as well. Erectile dysfunction (ED) can be an early warning sign of heart problems because the arteries in the penis are smaller than those that service the heart, so they become clogged faster.
Now for diabetes: the authors of a new study in the Annals of Family Medicine reported that men with erectile dysfunction had more than twice the odds of having undiagnosed diabetes. In fact, for the average man aged 40 to 59, the predicted probability of having undiagnosed diabetes was 1 in 10 among those with ED compared with 1 in 50 among those without ED.
Man boobs may suggest liver disease or a hormone imbalance.
In most cases, men who develop man boobs are hosting an excess amount of fatty breast tissue because they are overweight. The solution is to lose weight and hit the exercise circuit!
But in some cases, man boobs are the result of gynaecomastia (female breasts in men), which is caused by an imbalance of estrogen and testosterone. Basically, when the ratio of estrogen to testosterone is out of synch, a man’s breasts can grow. If a man’s testicles are not operating properly, even though the pituitary gland is telling them to make testosterone, they fail to do so and end up producing more estrogen.
Man boobs also can be a sign of liver disease. Damage to the liver can throw off a man’s hormone balance, which in turn can result in gynaecomastia. So if you’ve been covering up those man boobs with big shirts, it’s time to talk to your doctor about possible hormone imbalances. Some of these natural ways to eliminate the infamous dad bod also can be effective!
Lumps around the nipple may indicate breast cancer.
Less than 1 percent of breast cancer cases occur in men, yet that does not mean you should be lackadaisical about the presence of any lumps that appear around your nipples or in the general vicinity. If you notice a lump (which are often painless) or other signs of breast cancer, such as swelling or ulcers on the chest, an inverted or tender nipple, or discharge from the nipple, make an appointment to see your doctor as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and treatment helps ensure a better prognosis.
Drinking excessively could be a sign of depression.
It’s one thing to have a drink or two with the guys; it’s quite another to use booze to help you cope with life’s challenges. Drinking to excess can be a signal of depression in men, who frequently bottle up their feelings rather than seek help. In a 2015 study published in BMC Public Health, the authors found that a 2.5-fold increase in depression among men who were “alcohol-dependent” when compared with nondrinkers. Drinking not only won’t help you cope with depression and emotional turmoil; it also can damage your physical health. According to Dr. John Chisholm, a former general practitioner and chair of the Men’s Health Forum, it’s important to “teach men that they should be in touch with their emotions. And if those emotions get out of control, it’s not a sign of weakness to seek help.” Good advice.
Peeing too often at night could be a prostate problem.
If you are getting up several times a night to urinate, you’re not only losing sleep; you could be ignoring a prostate problem. Have you noticed some leaking, straining, or urinary urgency during the day as well? These are also signs of prostate issues, including an enlarged prostate (aka, benign prostatic hyperplasia), prostatitis, and prostate cancer. Don’t lose sleep! See your healthcare professional so he or she can determine whether you are experiencing a problem with your prostate. There are plenty of lifestyle approaches to supporting and maintaining a healthy prostate, including taking a natural supplement specifically for men’s prostate health.
Change in sex drive could mean fertility problems.
Hormones are the common factor between a shift in a man’s libido and fertility issues. More precisely, hormonal changes could indicate hypogonadism, in which a man’s testicles do not produce enough androgens (male hormones, such as testosterone and androstenedione). Low libido can be caused by a variety of factors, all of which can be resolved. EveryDay Male, a natural testosterone, energy, and sexual health promoter, is one option that may prove helpful.
Blood in the urine may indicate bladder cancer.
Hematuria, or blood in the urine, can be caused by a number of factors, one of which is prolonged intense exercise, such as long distance running. A urinary tract infection or hemorrhoids are also possibilities. However, another possible cause is bladder cancer.
While no one likes to hear the word “cancer,” men who see blood in their pee that cannot be associated with exercise should see their physician. The main risk factors for bladder cancer are smoking and exposure to toxic substances. Other symptoms of bladder cancer include recurring urine infections, urinary frequency, unexplained weight loss, tiredness, and abdominal or lower back pain. If the toilet bowl is pink or red, it’s time to see your doctor.
A lump in your balls could be testicular cancer.
Here’s the thing: lots of men have lumps or similar abnormalities in their balls, and they turn out to be noncancerous. However, infrequently those lumps are a sign of testicular cancer, which is the most common cancer among men aged 20 to 35. An estimated 8,430 men will be diagnosed with testicular cancer in the United States in 2015, and 380 will die. The good news about testicular cancer is that it is highly treatable if it is diagnosed early. Know your balls! If you feel a lump in your testicles (and you should be examining yourself on a regular basis), have your doc check it out.
A painful big toe could be gout.
That sudden, severe pain in your big toe—or another joint in your body—is a signal of gout. Men are three to four times more likely than women to develop this form of arthritis, which is characterized by an accumulation of uric acid that then form sharp crystals of sodium urate in and around joints. Left unattended, these crystals can lead to irreversible joint damage. Fortunately, changes in your diet (limiting alcohol, meat, and seafood consumption), controlling your weight, moderate exercise, and use of medications (if needed) can help control gout.
Heed your body’s signs and signals and see a doctor if something is out of place. Your health and future depend on it.