Why do men die earlier than women?

mm Paul Verbiton January 17, 2020
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man and woman back to back

On average, women live longer than men. In fact, 57% of those that are age 65 and older are female. By age 85, 67% are women. The average lifespan is about seven years longer for women than men worldwide and about five years longer in the U.S.

The gender gap among the ageing is not hard to see. A quick glance around assisted living facilities and most nursing homes in the United States often tells the story: The magnitude difference of women will normally outnumber men, which is often striking.

For instance: an organisation called “A Place for Mom” that helps families find assisted living or other services for senior citizens. The name of the organization reflects how much bigger the elderly female care market is, while they support men as well as women.

So why do men die first on average?

There are so many reasons why the ratio of men to women begins to favour women. Among are the most potent factors? Men tend to:

Take higher risks: Biological destiny may be some of the reason. The part that controls judgement & consideration of an action’s consequences, which is the frontal lobe of the brain grows more slowly in boys and young men than in their female counterparts. This possibly adds to the fact that more boys and men die due to violence or accident than girls and women. Examples include driving drunk, biking and homicide. Detrimental lifestyle decisions between young men, such as excessive drinking and smoking may be due to lack of judgement & consideration of consequences.

Have jobs that are more dangerous: In some of the riskiest occupations such as firefighting, military combat, and working at construction sites, men far outnumber women.

Die of heart disease more often and at a younger age: Men are 50% more likely to die of heart disease than women. Some of the reason is that men have lower estrogen levels than women. In addition, medical risks, like unfavourable cholesterol levels or poorly treated high blood pressure, may contribute as well.

Are larger than women: Larger creatures tend to die younger across many species than smaller ones. However, the magnitude of this effect in humans is uncertain and may work in opposition to male longevity.

Commit suicide attempt more often than women: Depression is considered common among men and men make more suicide attempts. Some blame this to the cultural norms, which discourage men from soliciting help for mental illness and the tendency for men to avoid seeking care for depression.

Are less socially connected: People with weaker and fewer social connections tend to have higher death rates for reasons that aren’t clear.

Avoid physicians: Men are more likely to skip regular health screens to see a doctor than women say the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

The uneven field of play for boys begins early. The Y chromosome tends to exhibit mutations more frequently than X chromosomes, and X-linked abnormalities between boys are not “masked” by a second regular version due to the deficiency of a second X chromosome in men. Survival in the womb is also less uncertain for male foetuses. Developmental disorders that shorten life expectancy are even more common among boys.

What can we do to help men live longer?

We can’t do much about these factors, but some are modifiable. For instance, men tend to avoid medical care far more than women leading them to symptoms of depression and going for a regular medical check for severe medical problems like high blood pressure could reduce some of the possibility of men to die younger.

The survival gap between women and men indicates an average tendency among large numbers of people. In fact, many wives predecease their husband. Individual risk factors such as a strong family history of breast cancer, diabetes or smoking can outweigh the general possibility of women to live longer.

If we avoid preventable, premature death among men (and women) in future, we’ll be more successful and the gender gap among the elderly may eventually narrow because many of these efforts will have a bigger impact on men.

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Category: Blog, Health, Lifestyle
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Paul Verbiton

I enjoy spotting opportunities and doing my best to grab them if I can. I am eager to see the world, I love taking photos and writing, coming up with topics that are pleasant to read, funny, and interesting at the same time.

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