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Formed in 1994 the MHF aims to help by focusing on groups of men who have the worst health and seeing how they can make a difference, whether it be through physical activity, or being there to turn to for mental problems. Men are less likely to lead a healthy lifestyle. They are more likely to smoke, drink alcohol to hazardous levels and be overweight or obese. These lifestyles can lead into serious diseases such as cancer, heart diseases and stokes, the risk of which can be reduced by leading a healthy lifestyle. The aim of the awareness week is to remove the barriers, reach out and make the most of it when men do engage. The importance is on the removal of the barriers to using health care, mental health and preventative care - especially for men of a working age who remain less likely to:
But the figures still remain high in that 4 in 5 suicides are male but only a minority of these men were engaged with mental health services. More needs to be done. But while in society, male depression and illness is seen as a weakness in masculinity. Especially when unhelpful clichés of 'big boys don't cry' and 'what doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger' are etched onto the public consciousness, they will continue to be big barriers to men seeking treatment for their conditions. So how can you look after yourself?
For more information on men’s health week or to join one of the fundraising events in your area search online at www.menshealthforum.org.uk
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