Ten Things To Protect Your Prostate Health
Another year is upon us. It’s time to make that another New Years resolution or two. So how about dedicating this one to doing something good for health.
- Address the symptoms - You know your body better than anyone else. If something is bothering you or just doesn’t appear as it previously had , before it becomes a large problem, seek medical attention.
- Begin monthly testicular self examination - Women have been
Doing breast self examinations for many years, however, most men
do not perform testicular self exam (TSE). Testicular cancer is easily detectable and a simple self-check can identify early problems. A normal testicle will feel very similar to the shape of an egg. If it has an abnormal contour or has a lump, seek immediate medical care.
- Get a PSA done - This simple blood test can identify early prostate problems. Over 230,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. Early detection in most cases will help achieve a cure.
- Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate- Patients forget how important water is. Adequate hydration helps digestion and controls the body’s temperature. When exercising, make sure that you increase your fluid consumption.
- Increase your exercise regimen - If you are not exercising, now is as a good time as any to begin. Try to do an aerobic activity for at least 30 minutes 3 times per week. If you are already exercising, try to bring your level of exercise up to a new level. Creating a regular exercise schedule will help you comply with your plan.
- Colonoscopy - stop putting off the test that so many fear. Screening colonoscopy after age 50 will help identify many early pre-cancerous and cancerous lesions of the colon and lead to increased survival rates.
- Stop Smoking - most of us know about the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer. But most don’t realize that cigarette smoking is also associated with bladder cancer. Kidney cancer is also associated with cigarette smoking. Erectile dysfunction can also occur as a result of smoking. There are numerous medical treatments that are now available to help with smoking cessation.
- Time for a physical examination - Over the age of 50, a yearly physical should be performed. If you are younger than 50, exams should still be performed, every 3 years between ages 20-39, and every 2 years between 40-49.
- Time to change your diet - We have all heard this numerous times but increasing the intake of fruits and vegetables, while decreasing the amount of red meat consumed is very important. High fiber foods need to become a routine part of your dietary regimen.
- Keep on trucking!! - If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, again!!. So you’ve set your eyes on some of these resolutions, and shortly into the New Year, you realize that it is just isn’t happening. Don’t wait until next year. Reassess why you fail, enact some changes, and get started again.
Jay Motola, MD, is a board-certified urologist and attending physician, Department of Urology, Mount Sinai West, and Assistant Professor of Urology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Dr. Motola is a summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Boston University, and earned his medical degree at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.