What you should know about men's mental health

What you should know about men’s mental health

Men’s mental health is a significant but frequently neglected health issue. Mental health can impact men in ways that are distinct from women.

Both genders encounter mental health challenges, but there are noticeable disparities in the problems they face and the elements that contribute to these problems.

What you should know about men's mental health
What you should know about men’s mental health

Continue reading to gain more insight into the prevalent issues and conditions impacting men’s mental health, as well as possible treatments and methods to assist others dealing with mental health issues.

Reaching out for assistance is a vital initial move in healing from any mental health disorder.

Mental health problems impact males and females in distinct ways, as outlined below:

Variations in the prevalence of conditions and suicide rates

Women are more prone to suffer from mental health disorders than men.

However, men are over 3.5 times more likely to succumb to suicide than women. This could be attributed to their preference for more deadly methods, such as firearms.

Diverse influencing elements

The causes and triggers of men’s issues can differ from those affecting women.

For instance, societal expectations and traditional gender roles often underpin men’s issues, leading them to believe they must:

  • Act as the primary earners in the household
  • Exhibit conventional “male” characteristics, like power and dominance
  • Depend on self-reliance and avoid seeking assistance from others
  • Refrain from expressing their feelings openly

Adhering to these conventional views can adversely affect men’s mental health and prevent them from seeking help and therapy.

Variations in help-seeking behavior

Men are significantly less inclined than women to seek help for problems such as depression, substance misuse, and stressful life situations. As per Mental Health America, this can be attributed to:

  • Societal “standards”
  • A hesitance to communicate
  • Minimizing their symptoms

A National Health Interview Survey reveals that only 1 in 3 men used medication for daily feelings of depression or anxiety, and merely 1 in 4 consulted a mental health expert.

The indicators and symptoms of a men’s mental health disorder will vary based on the type, but there are some symptoms that individuals can be vigilant about. These include:

  • Exhibiting hostility, fury, and impatience
  • Alterations in mood or energy states
  • Fluctuations in eating or sleeping patterns
  • Struggling with concentration
  • Feeling uneasy or excessively alert
  • High intake of alcoholic beverages
  • Misuse of drugs
  • Engaging in hazardous activities
  • Experiencing feelings of sadness, despair, numbness, or emotional indifference
  • Suffering from unexplained physical discomfort or pain
  • Obsessive or compulsive thoughts or actions
  • Behaving or thinking in a manner that raises concern among others or negatively affects professional, social, or familial life
  • Contemplating or attempting to commit suicide

If these symptoms are observed in oneself or noticed by a close one, it is advisable to seek medical attention.

Addressing men’s mental health problems in their initial stages can often prevent the symptoms from worsening and reduce the likelihood of complications.

Numerous elements heighten the likelihood of men’s mental health disorders and suicide in men. The subsequent categories might be more susceptible than others:

  • Elderly white males: White males aged 85 and above are the most susceptible to suicide. This demographic records the highest number of suicides annually compared to any other group based on age, gender, or race.
  • Men who have undergone trauma: Experiencing traumatic incidents, such as participating in warfare or being an assault victim, heightens the risk of developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
  • Men facing employment difficulties: Working under unfavorable conditions or having an excessive workload can escalate the risk of mental health disorders. Joblessness and retirement also amplify the risk of depression and suicide.
  • Men who have experienced marital dissolution: Depression is more prevalent and intense among divorced men. One research indicates that being unmarried is a significant suicide inducer among men.
  • Men with legal or financial issues: Encountering legal or financial troubles can instigate the onset of men’s mental health disorders and heighten the risk of suicide.
  • Men who abuse alcohol or drugs: Men are more prone to indulge in illegal drug use and alcohol consumption, which can initiate or worsen mental health conditions.
  • Men with a family history of mental health disorders: Numerous psychiatric conditions — including bipolar disorder, depression, and schizophreniaare hereditary, indicating a genetic factor.
  • Men grappling with other life adversities: Other risk elements for mental health disorders and suicide encompass physical ailment or discomfort, disputes with family or friends, and the sickness or demise of a family member.

Among the most common mental health issues in men are:


Depression is defined by a continuous low mood that disrupts daily life. Globally, it’s one of the most frequently diagnosed mental health disorders.

Depression is nearly twice as prevalent in women compared to men. However, men are significantly less likely than women to seek help for it.

Discover some of the less obvious signs of depression here.

Explore the common symptoms of depression in men here.

Anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorders are marked by severe and uncontrollable feelings of dread and worry.

The most frequently diagnosed type, generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), often appears alongside depression. While women are twice as prone to GAD, men are less likely to seek help for it.

Other forms of anxiety disorders, such as social anxiety disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), are equally prevalent in both genders.

Social anxiety disorder triggers intense anxiety and fear in social settings, whereas OCD leads to the constant repetition of specific thoughts (obsessions) or an obsessive need to carry out specific routines repeatedly (compulsions).


People with schizophrenia suffer from a severe mental illness that causes them to misinterpret reality. They suffer from delusions, hallucinations, and other types of disordered thought patterns.

Schizophrenia can significantly affect one’s relationships and quality of life. Ninety percent of people diagnosed with schizophrenia before the age of thirty-one are male.


The symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) include hyperarousal, avoidance, and reliving a traumatic event.

Studies show that half of women and 60% of men have experienced at least one traumatic event in their lives. Different trauma types have different effects, with men more likely to encounter:

  • accidents
  • assaults
  • combat
  • natural disasters
  • witnessing a death or injury

Sexual assault and child sexual abuse are more common among women.

Although men have a higher risk of traumatic events, women are more likely to develop PTSD.

Substance abuse

Men are more likely than women to use illegal drugs and become dependent on alcohol across the board in most age groups. They also have a higher risk of overdosing and needing to visit the emergency room.

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism reports that 27,000 women and 68,000 men die each year from alcohol-related causes.

Despite the fact that many men are reluctant to start and maintain mental health treatment, doing so is an essential first step toward recovery. People can learn to control their symptoms and start feeling better with the right kind of treatment.

Among the available treatments are:


People who are experiencing difficulties that have triggered mental health conditions can benefit from therapy. Additionally, it can assist people in learning new coping mechanisms, changing harmful behaviors and negative thoughts, and managing their symptoms.

Therapy comes in a wide variety of forms. People must find the right therapist and type of therapy for them in order for it to be effective.


Physicians prescribe medication to treat a variety of mental health issues and the symptoms that go along with them.

For instance, they might advise:

  • Antidepressants
  • Antianxiety medications
  • Antipsychotic drugs
  • Sleep aids
  • Usually, medical professionals will advise patients to combine psychotherapy and medication.

Changes in lifestyle

  • Maintain a healthy diet.
  • Make time to sleep.
  • Work out most days.
  • Use yoga, meditation, or other methods to manage your stress.
  • Use of alcohol and drugs should be restricted or avoided.

Participating in group therapy or support groups can be highly beneficial for individuals dealing with mental health issues.

It is impossible to completely avoid mental health issues. But taking the following actions could lower your chance of getting one:

  • Talk to your loved ones, especially when things are stressful.
  • If you notice any signs of poor mental health, get help right away.
  • Maintain your current level of care to avoid relapsing into depression or other mental health issues.
  • Discover ways to reduce stress by practicing mindfulness, meditation, creative expression, or other techniques.
  • Make healthy lifestyle decisions by eating right, getting enough sleep, and exercising.
  • See a therapist if you have concerns like low self-esteem or childhood trauma, as these can lead to mental health issues in the future.

Scarlett Johansson

Hi there! I'm Scarlett, a passionate dietitian and nutrition enthusiast. Join me on a journey to discover the science of healthy eating and practical tips for a balanced lifestyle. Let's nourish our bodies, one bite at a time! 🍏🥑 #NutritionNerd #HealthyLiving

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