3 Most Common Medical Conditions That Can Strike Middle-Aged Men
Due to scientific and technological advancements in public health more and more people are starting to live longer. This is good news for some, but it is unexpectedly bad news for others.
First of all, living long can be costly. Second, middle aged men today did not take care of their bodies when they were younger and are now expected to experience a slew of age related ailments that they will have to cure or manage with a cocktail of drugs along with strict dietary constrictions. Being old is tough and sticking to your new health regimen is going to be a lot tougher.
Below is a list of the most common medical conditions that middle aged men suffer from. This article aims to provide information to middle aged men and women, and to be a cautionary tale for the younger generations who need to take better care of their bodies.
1. Prostate Cancer
The development of prostate cancer is highly linked to age, with the highest incidence rates in older men. There seems to be a sharp increase in the rate of incidences towards the late 50’s with an incidence rate of 166 per 100,000 men in the 55-59 age bracket. Ten years later the incidence will have most likely tripled (560 per 100,000). Once a man reaches his late 70’s (75-79) the rate will be 5 times higher at 800 cases for every 100,000 males.
For both sexes, reaching middle age causes a sharp 20% increase in the risk of getting any type of cancer. Prostate cancer in particular is the fastest rising cancer in men, making a 500% increase since 1979.
It would be prudent to have yourself screened for cancer regularly the moment you turn 40 but here are the symptoms to watch out for: a case of prostate cancer in your family, difficulty passing urine, urgency in passing urine, a sense of not being able to completely empty the bladder.
Be especially weary of the symptoms if you do not experience common symptoms of a urinary tract infection, like pain while passing urine and blood in your pee or semen, despite of the urgency and frequency of your peeing.
2. Cardiovascular Diseaseheart disease
Cardiovascular disease affects more than a third of men and women, in the 45-54 year old age group and the numbers just get worse with age.
Cardiovascular disease refers to all types of illnesses that affect our heart and blood vessels. It is the leading cause of death in the U.S., most especially in middle aged men.
Included under cardiovascular disease are the following: heart disease, heart failure, hypertension, arteriosclerosis, coronary heart disease, orthostatic hypotension, arrhythmia, heart failure and congenital heart disease.
Most CVDs are caused by lifestyle choices. Smoking, drinking alcohol, obesity, eating unhealthy food and living a sedentary lifestyle are among the most common causes of CVDs although it can also be caused by a birth defect and even by some bacteria and viruses.
Thankfully, cardiovascular disease is highly preventable and highly treatable. A change in lifestyle is usually enough to manage most symptoms. Common things to look out for are chest pain, palpitations, shortness of breath, nausea, weakness, dizziness, blacking out and sweating. It is important to note also that while chest pain is usually the most common and most recognizable of all these symptoms, there are a lot of times when a heart attack will not present itself with chest pain.
3. Type 2 Diabetes
In the United States, 8% of the population has diabetes. With increasingly unhealthy lifestyles type 2 diabetes has become more common in young people, but the risk typically increases with age with a high jump in risk percentage occurring in middle aged men.
Diabetes is a disease that occurs when, for some reason, your body is no longer able to control your blood sugar levels effectively.
- Type 1 diabetes is when your body itself mistakenly attacks insulin producing cells present in the pancreas, making it increasingly difficult for your body to produce insulin.
- Type 2 diabetes occurs when tissues in the body become insulin resistant.
The following people will have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes and should get themselves screened regularly: the obese or overweight, those living a sedentary lifestyle, those with a history of type 2 diabetes in the immediate family, and those who have a diet high in processed carbohydrates and low in fiber and wholegrain.
Some ethnicities also have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes: African-American, Pacific Islanders, American Indians, and Asian Americans.