Recent studies have shown that men do not talk about their health history enough and it may be harming their children.
Your children, when they are adults, need to know what health conditions you have had, particularly if there may be some hereditary component to the condition. By knowing their family’s health history, they can save themselves from possible health issues. For example, prostate cancer, infertility, and low testosterone are often hereditary, and knowing your genetic risks can lead to early detection. A recent national study from Orlando Health found, “four out of five men have never talked to a family member about sexual health” and that men under 35 years old are less likely than women to discuss many health issues that are known to have a genetic component. Women were found to be nearly 90 percent more likely to discuss sexual health, cancer, and mental illness with their relatives.
Dr. Jamin Brahmbhatt and Dr. Sijo Parekattil, Urologists at Orlando Health, looked to change that with the 4th Annual Drive for Men’s Health that recently took place from Orlando, Florida to Salt Lake City, Utah. They drive cross country to raise awareness about the importance of establishing an open dialogue regarding men’s health. They stop along the way to take part in educational lectures and activities to raise awareness for Men’s Health. Dr. Brahmbhatt’s goal is to bring attention to the rarely-discussed subject. “[Children] might not understand what the benefits are when they’re young, but I bet you when they get older, they’ll appreciate that [their fathers and grandfathers] had that conversation with them at an early age,” said Dr. Brahmbhatt.
This issue is crucial for men between the ages of 18 to 35 because they are most likely to be sexually active and fathering children during these years and thus issues of genetically linked diseases are of utmost importance. If one is aware of a family history of a disease and/or know its signs and symptoms, they are more likely to have it treated sooner and have an increased likelihood of survival. Furthermore, with regards to cancer, the earlier the signs and symptoms are noticed, the more likely it is that the disease is in its earlier stages and has less chance of having already spread throughout the body. Thus, Dr. Brahmbhatt and Dr. Parekattil hope to have sparked increased dialogue regarding men’s health with their cross-country trip.