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Prioritising Self-care for NZ Men’s Health Week 2022
Updates / News , 19 Jun 22
Trigger warning: mental health and suicide.

As Men’s Health Week 2022 concludes, Psychiatry Registrar and PMA Member, Dr Christmas Seu, stresses the importance of looking after our mental health all year round. 

Dr Seu says that the week is a reminder to prioritize mental health just as much as other aspects of men’s health - June is also Men’s Mental Health month. 

“Sometimes mental health gets left behind when us men think about what it means to be healthy. 

Between the ages of 18 and 44, the leading cause of death around that age group for men is suicide. For our Pasifika youth, particularly men, suicide rates are quite high compared to everyone else in New Zealand; its crucial conversations are had and action takes place before it reaches that point.”

Dr Seu says it is encouraging to see an increased awareness for men’s mental health and wellbeing. 

“It is well known that men are less likely to tell anyone that we are struggling as there’s still a theme that exists where if we ask for help, we have failed ourselves. 

But there has been a big drive around learning more about men’s mental health and we’re presenting for more help. There’s definitely more noise out there to embrace that it is okay to reach out.”

Dr Seu says a practical approach to looking after our mental health and wellbeing can be something as simple as “self-care”.

“Self-care is a concept that men tend to not embrace, but it is really important. This can look like having good nutrition, exercising, getting a good rest or going out for a half an hour walk.

Maintaining connections with our closest friends and loved ones is key as well. Sometimes you just need a bit of a break and good company.”

For anyone who may be experiencing mental health struggles, Dr Seu says that reaching out to your close friends and family could be a starting point; allowing yourself to be open to having conversations around how you are feeling. 

He encourages people to seek professional help if in need of further advice and support.

#pmaunite #pmafamily

Date: Sunday 16 June 2022