This is the first post in a weekly Movember series publishing every Friday in November 2015.
Movember is upon us, which means it’s time to shave down, start growing, get moving, and begin talking about men’s health.
If you’ve never heard of this annual celebration of men and moustaches, the Movember Foundation is a global charity that raises awareness and funds to support men’s health issues such as testicular cancer, prostate cancer, poor mental health, and physical inactivity. For 30 days, participants like me grow a moustache and become a walking, talking billboard for men’s health. Everyone involved is committed to changing the face of men’s health, and we are committed to helping men live happier, healthier, longer lives. In fact, Movember has raised $650 million and funded over 1,000 men’s health programs to date.
I’ve been a Movember participant – a Mo Bro – for the past five years, and I couldn’t be prouder of this organization and the work it’s doing. It’s no secret that men often have a hard time talking about their personal health and taking steps to improve it. As a personal trainer, I feel it’s part of my job to start those conversations and keep them going.
Talking About Testicular Cancer
This year, to help men become more comfortable talking about their health, I’m going to focus on one aspect of the Movember campaign each week. First up is testicular cancer – the most common cancer in men aged 15-34 in the United States according to the Movember Foundation. Much of the time, testicular cancer patients follow established treatments and have relatively positive outcomes. However, some men are not as fortunate. Because of this, we know that more needs to be done to support these young men, both physically and mentally, through their diagnosis and treatment to help them achieve a long and healthy life after cancer.
Movember aims to bring people together to find solutions that will change the way men with testicular cancer are treated and supported on a fundamental basis. The organization is committed to:
- Deepening the worldwide scientific understanding of testicular cancer and its treatments and outcomes.
- Providing proactive support for men and boys affected by testicular cancer and their families.
- Educating men and boys on risk factors and encourage them to seek treatment.
Because testicular cancer is relatively unknown, it is often overlooked even in our own backyard. At least once a month, men should complete a quick self-exam by gently feeling their testicles and scrotum. Note any changes in the size, texture (appearance of lumps or bumps), or sensitivity of the testes or scrotum. Look for any changes to the skin of your penis or any lumps or growths on your penis. If you notice any changes, or feel pain during intercourse, be sure to talk to your doctor right away. Early diagnosis and treatment are the key to more positive outcomes.
This year, Team ProMedica and I are dedicated to changing the outlook of testicular cancer here in Toledo and around the world. I hope you’ll join us. Take action today and grow a mustache, start a conversation or help us raise funds this Movember. For more information, visit Team ProMedica at http://moteam.co/team-promedica.