Go balls to the wall for Men's Health Week


Men’s Health Week starts today, and those of us who are men – or have men in our lives – will know how difficult it can be to talk about health and seek help when needed.

Young man running on treadmill

So, we have some things that you might want to consider doing – or encouraging others to do – between 14 and 20 June.

Cop a feel

You don’t need to buy a ticket and line up for hours to inspect the Crown Jewels. Whether or not you identify as a man, if you have testicles then it’s important to check them regularly.

Incidence of testicular cancer rises sharply between ages 15 and 35, so you really do need to be checking your plums regularly. Testicular cancer is treatable and has a high survivability rate if you catch it early.

So next time you’re in the shower or bath, take a moment to check for lumps, swellings or anything that seems out of place. And if there isn’t anything, it’s still important to know what your balls feel like normally to help you notice if there’s any difference.

Macmillan’s guide to checking for testicular cancer 

Of course, if you do notice anything odd, different, or out of place, then speak to your GP as soon as you can. Early detection is critical.

You’ve checked your downstairs, now what about your upstairs?

Everybody’s mental health has taken a battering over the past year-and-a-bit with all the challenges COVID-19 has brought with it. Social isolation, stress about the world around us, loss of job or income, illness and even the death of loved ones is a lot to handle on its own, let alone all together.

Talking to others about how you feel is important, whether it’s to your partner, your mates or a professional. When someone asks how you’re doing, it’s OK to say you’re struggling. Acknowledging you aren’t at your best is the first step to getting back to it.

If you are looking for somewhere to talk about how you are feeling, you can sign up for Togetherall – our free, online mental health platform. Sometimes it’s easier to put your thoughts into words if you write them down, and on Togetherall you can do just that. You can interact anonymously with others, get help from mental health professionals and access a range of tools and strategies to help you start to feel like yourself again.

Sign up to Togetherall today

Your GP can help you access a range of services you may find beneficial as well, so don’t forget to talk to them too.

And if you’re worried about a friend, reach out and ask how they are doing. Sometimes that’s the nudge people need to be more open about what they’re going through. It’s always easier to ask the question than wish you had.

The Men’s Health Forum are encouraging men to look after their own wellbeing with their “Can Do Challenge” over Men’s Health Week. There are 5 things you can do to improve your mental wellbeing, so get involved over the week.

Find out about the Men’s Health Forum “Can Do Challenge”

Do you feel safe at home?

Are you, or is someone you know, experiencing domestic abuse? Abuse doesn’t have to be violence, and cases of domestic abuse with men as the victims are severely under-reported.

We can help. If you live in Oxfordshire or West Berkshire, we can help you access places of safety for you and your family, no matter which gender you are. Call us on 0800 731 0055 and we can help.

You can also call the National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 200 0247.

The ManKind Initiative has a range of resources for men experiencing domestic abuse, so if you, or someone you know is experiencing abuse, they may be able to help.

Find out more about the ManKind Initiative