By Dr. Samuel P. Martin
Father’s Day is almost here, so there’s no better time to reveal a dirty health secret about men: They tend to have less awareness of their physical health!
Unlike women, men tend to overlook problems even if they’re struggling with uncomfortable symptoms. Plus, men are far more hesitant to get medical help if they do notice problems, choosing to instead brush off physical problems. And this includes venous disease, which causes problems like itching and painful legs and can eventually lead to serious conditions.
It’s easier for women to identify some of the greatest risks for venous disease, like multiple pregnancies. But men typically develop venous disease due to genetic predisposition, obesity and prolonged standing at work, which are less recognizable risk factors. This lets vein disease slowly sneak up on men.
Clothing choices in men and a lower emphasis on physical appearance can also contribute to the problem. Dresses and skirts showcase embarrassing vein problems in women. But men tend to wear pants more often, covering the visual signs of vein problems and making them easier to ignore.
Although men and women approach venous disease differently, the problems can be just as dangerous for both sexes. Early on, vein disease may include an area of dry, itchy skin, usually on the inner calf and ankle area. The area may then become tender and firmer. Men need to fight their first instinct to ignore early swelling, itching, dry skin and discoloration that can gradually worsen and cause ulceration.
It’s no accident that women generally live longer than men. Men are less attentive to their bodies and rarely seek help when questions do arise. Too many men feel health concerns imply weakness and are embarrassed to seek care, leading to dangerous treatment delays that let these problems worsen.
Don’t let Father’s Day pass without showing him how much you care for his health. Reach out to us to schedule a Priority Consultation to help keep the special man in your life healthy!