HEALTH experts are urging Halton men to tackle health problems head on and to seek advice if they have any symptoms.

On average, men visit their doctor half as often as women and 100,000 men a year die prematurely.

In support of the men’s health forum’s national men’s health week from June 9-15, the NHS is reminding men of the symptoms they should never ignore.

Dr John Hussey, medical director for NHS England, Merseyside, said: “When it comes to addressing health problems, men can be too shy or embarrassed to speak to a health professional.

“Seeking help or advice when a problem is first noticed will help patients get access to treatment faster giving them the best chance of making a full recovery.

“Therefore we would urge men to mark national men’s health week by making a commitment to carry out regular self-checks so they can spot abnormalities as soon as they arise and seek advice early if a problem is discovered.”

Health symptoms men are urged to confront include: testicle lumps or abnormalities, changes to moles including itchiness, bleeding or changes to the colour or shape, feeling depressed or stressed, prolonged impotence or trouble urinating.

An appointment can be made with a GP or advice and guidance can be obtained by paying a visit to the local pharmacy.

People can also get health advice and be given guidance on the most appropriate NHS service to use by calling 111.

The NHS choices website is also a useful source of advice for patients which offers an online clinic service that enables members of the public to get quick answers to their personal medical problems from specialists, including consultants, GPs, nurses and other clinicians.

Dr John Hussey, added: “These are all difficult subjects to discuss but GPs and pharmacists are professionals who deal with people, their bodies and illness on a daily basis. They won’t be shocked or embarrassed by what they are told and are there to help.

“If it makes things easier, when seeing their GP patients can ask to see either a male or female doctor when they call to make an appointment.”